Norfolk & Suffolk: Rail Meeting Update

15 December 2011, 15:52 | Updated: 15 December 2011, 15:55

Heart's being told by MPs attending a rail summit meeting in Westminster that it could take up to twenty years to get the right rail service for Suffolk and Norfolk.

MPs from both counties like Elizabeth Truss, George Freeman, Ben Gummer, Chloe Smith, Henry Bellingham and Norman Lamb were all in Westminster this morning to meet with the Department For Transport and rail companies.

They are campaigning for a list of improvements:

  • Connecting Norwich / Ipswich to London in less time – with a clear delivery plan to do so
  • Improving Norwich-Cambridge
  • Attending to the branch lines and intermediate stations, and increasing frequency on the nearby Fenline
  • Improving station facilities
  • Securing safety improvements at signals
  • Improvement in stock
  • Joint working with Network Rail
  • A plan for maximising the economic opportunity of the Olympics

Elizabeth Truss MP, George Freeman MP, Ben Gummer

Background details on the Rail Summit: Hosted by Norfolk/Suffolk MPs at the Houses of Parliament on Thursday 15th December 2011. The event in the Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House, Westminster started at 0930-1030 for the Norwich-London line, and 1030-1130 for the Fen Line and Norwich-Cambridge line. The summit, led by Chloe Smith MP, brought together Network Rail, train operating companies Abellio and First Capital Connect, county councils and local enterprise partnerships to discuss improvements to Norfolk’s rail network. 

Elizabeth Truss, MP for South West Norfolk said: "I am delighted by the commitment given by the Department for Transport to kick start this project.  This is a major boost to the campaign and recognises the importance of the Fen Line and the Cambridge to Norwich lines. The estimated budget of £10million for the upgrade of Ely North Junction can be justified on the basis of the economic return. We shall be meeting again in January to ensure the pressure is maintained so that investment takes place sooner rather than later."

Chloe Smith, MP for Norwich North told Heart they came up with a great agreement to improve the rail service, but it could take up to 20 years to get it completely right:

Chloe Smith MP Speaks To Heart