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Norwich and Norfolk MPs launch blueprint for improvements to East Anglian train services

10:06 02 July 2012

Launching the rail manifesto

Launching the rail manifesto 'Once in a Generation' at Norwich station. MPs Chloe Smith and Norman Lamb with Graham Plant. Photo: Bill Smith

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An alliance of MPs, business leaders, local authorities, local enterprise partnerships and rail groups met at Norwich Train Station this morning, before heading off to London to launch a blueprint to improve East Anglia’s rail network.

Norwich north MP Chloe Smith, Norwich south MP Simon Wright, mid Norfolk MP George Freeman and north Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, were joined by Jonathan Denby, head of corporate affairs for rail operator Greater Anglia, to catch the train to London to call for East Anglia to get more investment, an improved infrastructure and new trains.

The blueprint, called Once in a Generation - a Rail Prospectus for East Anglia, is a collaborative document and puts forward the case for a programme of improvements between now and 2032, which aims to help create thousands of jobs and unlock billions of pounds of investment.

It claims the economic performance of Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk is being held back by inadequate infrastructure and out of date trains.

It argues that East Anglia’s leadership in technology and innovation must be supported by improved rail services.

Ms Smith said: “This prospectus represent a one in a generation opportunity to get improvements on our rail service.

“We have got a four county alliance working together here, it is really important to stress that this benefits all four of those areas, by really unlocking our economy.

“We hope that the kind of improvements we are asking for, more reliability, shorter journey times, better quality carriage stock, infrastructure improvements, will benefit all passengers along those lines, and really unlock what we can do.

“We are hoping today to get heard on the kind of investments that we would like to see over the next 20 years.”

10 comments

  • Would suggest the MPs travel on chiltern trains silver sets to Birmingham and see how old rolling stock can be refurbished with modern plug doors and a fast 90 min service using modern diesel locomotives so you don't need to buy modern airline style units to run a modern railway chiltern is one of the best railways in the uk now in fact taking business off virgin trains to Birmingham

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    Glenn Rivett

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Chiltern use the same mk3 stock as greater Anglia but they are worlds apart since they have been refurbished same stock as used by east coast midland main line great western etc on there hst sets. But these have all been refurbished to a very high standard great western first class have leather seats And I would consider these the best on the uk network. So ga please whoever gets the long term franchise don't buy airline style units

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    Glenn Rivett

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • It looks like Labour are making steps to make it policy at the next General Election for some lines... Now all that noise from the Lib Dems recently about wanting to improve the Sheringham to Norwich line but no inclusion of it in these plans. Why isn't Norman Lamb representing us?

    Report this comment

    Jeffrey Osborne

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Chiltern use the same mk3 stock as greater Anglia but they are worlds apart since they have been refurbished same stock as used by east coast midland main line great western etc on there hst sets. But these have all been refurbished to a very high standard great western first class have leather seats And I would consider these the best on the uk network. So ga please whoever gets the long term franchise don't buy airline style units

    Report this comment

    Glenn Rivett

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • With the population growth that's forecast, why not also look at reopening some lines - North Norfolk was virtually cut off from the rail network thanks to Beeching. Look at what's being done in Scotland with "Borders Rail" and you will realise that with reopening some old lines plus building a few new bits, there could quite easily be a new 'Express' route from Norwich to Birmingham via Wroxham, Aylsham, Fakenham, Kings Lynn, Wisbech, March and Peterborough. Now that really would put Norfolk back on the rail map!

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    Norfolk and Good

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Nationalise

    Report this comment

    Callum Ringer

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Hellooooo ! Brandon Lewis. Are you out there ?. Why arn't you involved ???????

    Report this comment

    "V"

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • @Callum Ringer - I completely agree.How can a system as broken up as a jigsaw be run properly? And please, Mr. Wilkes, it is Thorpe Station, or Norwich Thorpe Station, but if you must call it Norwich, it is a Railway Station, not a "train" station.

    Report this comment

    T Doff

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Let's hope Chloe Smith has more of a clue about this than her disastrous appearance on Newsnight last week!

    Report this comment

    Dogberry

    Monday, July 2, 2012

  • Re Glen Rivett - Chiltern Railways...yes, owned by the Germans, new trains being bought by HMG built by the Germans...nuff said? Greater Anglia run by the double Dutch, who are quite happy to pay HMG £250m in the final year of their short franchise, well they need the cash to buy them German trains!

    Report this comment

    Public Champion

    Monday, July 2, 2012

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