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Rural Affairs

Transport, Local Government and the Regions written question – answered on 13th May 2002.

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Photo of Theresa May Theresa May Shadow Secretary of State for Transport

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what guidance he has issued to the Strategic Rail Authority on the application of rural proofing to its work.

Photo of Stephen Byers Stephen Byers Secretary of State, Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions

Paragraph 8.6 of the Directions and Guidance I gave to the Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) on 11 April requires the authority to use their published planning criteria in appraising rail schemes. These criteria requires costs and benefits relating to environment, accessibility, integration, safety and economy to be taken into account, many of which could identify specific rural impacts.

Financial assistance is provided to rural rail services as part of the Rail Passenger Partnership programme (RPP). RPP funding contributes to the provision of new or enhanced local and regional rail services or facilities. Projects cover both urban and rural networks, but have so far included increased services to rural areas, new stations and schemes to improve accessibility.

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