Train Operating Companies: Yorkshire — [Dame Cheryl Gillan in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 10:40 am on 19th December 2018.

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Photo of Andrew Jones Andrew Jones Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport) 10:40 am, 19th December 2018

If I get time I shall come on to the trans-Pennine upgrades, but the core purpose of the CP6 investment, which is a record from any Government in British history, is to increase reliability and punctuality.

The key thing that passengers will notice is new trains. New rolling stock will come in on Northern, TransPennine Express and London North Eastern Railway networks in the coming months, including the removal of Pacers by the end of 2019. By this time next year the vast majority of the 500 brand new carriages committed by Northern and TPE will have been delivered, and the remainder will have been completely refurbished. TPE will have introduced its new Nova trains on the north trans-Pennine route and all the Pacers will be gone from Northern. There will be more services to add to those already delivered, especially at weekends; there will also be later last trains in the evenings and earlier first trains on Sundays. Elsewhere, LNER will begin introducing its new Azuma trains next year.

The trans-Pennine upgrade is a huge Government initiative—a £2.9 billion upgrade covering York to Leeds and Manchester. It is one third of the expected rail upgrade investment in the next control period, so it is a significant point. By the way, freight has been mentioned, and it is of course still under our consideration for northern trans-Pennine.