Response to Chancellor’s Budget Statement
James Lewis, Leader of Leeds, and Ben Bradley MP, Leader of Nottinghamshire- co-chairs of the HS2 East campaign said:
“The announcements on local transport funding in today’s budget are welcome. The existing gap between transport spending in London and the South compared to the North and Midlands is stark, and this is a positive step.
“But that is only one part of the jigsaw, and we need new infrastructure North to South and East to West to connect our towns and cities to make the transformative changes we need. The Integrated Rail Plan for the North and Midlands is now 10 months overdue. This continued uncertainty is undermining business confidence and we need clarity now that we will get what we were promised. We are ambitious and want to work with Government to transform our communities in West Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and the throughout the east of the country.
“If the Eastern Leg of HS2 is scaled back or cancelled, the North East, Leeds, Sheffield and the East Midlands will pay a heavy price. We’ll miss out on jobs, investment and opportunity while the west of the country becomes better-connected through the high-speed rail network acting as a spur for growth and regeneration.
“There is no levelling up without full delivery of HS2 both sides of the Pennines.”