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GM transport bosses head for showdown with DfT

February 24, 2010

You may have seen on the local news that leaders of GMITA (including Worsley councillor Ian Macdonald) and various local MPs have been to London today to meet Lord Adonis, the Secretary of State for Transport.

Their objectives for the meeting are quite clear – to get the DfT to honour their own pledge to provide more carriages for the grossly over-crowded trains in our region.

You may recall a government announcement last year that over one thousand new carriages would be added to the railway in the next few years, with 182 (mainly second-hand ones) destined for Northern Rail and 42 for Trans-Pennine Express. After a few months of stalling the DfT started leaking revised lower totals, and avoiding any commitment to a published schedule for delivery. The latest rumours were that Northern’s allocation would be reduced by over half (still no timetable for receiving these either), and that TPE had heard nothing.

Anyone boarding the 7.38 this morning – and no doubt the equally over-crowded services which followed it – must be wishing our local representatives luck, and wondering how a modern country can make such a mess of the simple task of building trains that have been clearly and urgently needed for years !

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