Latest Rail News


Midlands Rail Hub needed to deliver 10 extra services an hour

Rail connections in the Midlands will need funding to meet growing pressures on capacity, a new report has said.

Midlands Connect, a group of 28 local authorities and 11 Local Enterprise Partnerships, has published the interim report of a £5m government-funded project to explore how to improve transport in the region.

It says that increased rail franchises and faster journey times in the region are the only way to avoid overcrowding on services by 2023.

The report also says that growth sites around HS2 stations will need to be integrated with the classic rail network to allow economic growth.

A survey by Midlands Connect found that a quarter of professional organisations in the region said they would be ‘likely’ or ‘highly likely’ to move locations if transport connections are not improved.

It says that a Midlands Rail Hub with an additional 10 services an hour is needed, which could potentially deliver £200m in economic growth a year and create 250,000 new jobs.

The report’s authors say there is “a compelling case to provide development funding” for the increased capacity options and that HS2 could potentially share development and even possession of the hub.

They say they will confirm where the 10 additional services should connect in their final report.

However, they note that they “recognise the lessons from the Hendy Review and the need to define early on a much tighter scope, funding envelope and outcomes” and the next stage of work will involve assessing whether increased value for money could be achieved through reduced spending and phasing of implementation.

In a speech at Derby Council Chambers yesterday, Chris Grayling, the new transport secretary, also welcomed the report’s support for HS2, repeating his commitment that he had “no plans to back away from” the high speed rail line.

However, both Balfour Beatty and the head of the National Audit Office have warned this week that the project could suffer because of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an RTM columnist? If so, click here.


Andrew Gwilt   23/07/2016 at 12:47

Centro operates both trams and suburban train services across Birmingham, West Midlands, Black Country, North Worcestershire, Southeast Shropshire, North Staffordshire, West & North Warwickshire and in Birmingham providing better transport for the Birmingham area and West Midlands region that London Midland, Virgin Trains, Chiltern Railways, Crosscountry and East Midlands Trains provides good train services including the Stourbridge Town-Junction line operated by London Midland as its a shuttle line between the 2 stations in Stourbridge which is on the borders with Black Country & North Worcestershire.

Francis   26/07/2016 at 11:03

The problem with these local authorities is that they've got champagne dreams but no money or expertise to make it happen - left alone they'd have trains running around with hardly anyone onboard.

Lesf   27/07/2016 at 22:40

Andrew, you are mistaken. Centro has never operated any train or any bus. And now it doesn't even exist as it's been replaced by WMCA (Mercia?). Francis, WMCA was designed by Chancellor Osborne to receive government money and spend it, but don't be surprised if his weird plans are ditched by the new cabinet.

Lesf   27/07/2016 at 22:49

"a Midlands Rail Hub with an additional 10 services an hour is needed". Really? We already have a midlands rail hub called New Street. Its capacity can be transformed by running trains through it instead of parking them for half an hour waiting to reverse. And New St is exactly in the centre of Brum. "Midlands Rail Hub" sounds like a new station that would fragment the existing network instead of restoring the integrity it desperately needs.

Add your comment



rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Network Rail’s subsidiary secures systems integrator contract in Australia

14/12/2018Network Rail’s subsidiary secures systems integrator contract in Australia

The Australian subsidiary of Network Rail Consulting has been named as the systems integrator for the Digital Systems Program in Sydney by Transp... more >
Infrastructure giant Amey to be sold to private equity firm in new year

14/12/2018Infrastructure giant Amey to be sold to private equity firm in new year

 Infrastructure giant Amey is expected to be sold to a private equity firm in the new year, according to reports. The Financial Times b... more >
HS2 and Crossrail suppliers admit to running ‘illegal cartel’ for 7 years

14/12/2018HS2 and Crossrail suppliers admit to running ‘illegal cartel’ for 7 years

Two UK rail suppliers to major projects such as HS1, HS2, and Crossrail have admitted to operating an illegal cartel for almost seven years with ... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

rail industry focus

View all News


HS2 train race: making the case

20/11/2018HS2 train race: making the case

Bombardier and Hitachi’s commitment to providing the best HS2 rolling stock pitch to the government was signified with the launch of their ... more >
Finding positives in negative short-circuiting devices

09/11/2018Finding positives in negative short-circuiting devices

Sponsored interview  Anything that brings about safety and time-saving benefits is a valued improvement for the rail industry, which is w... more >
Taking to the skies

30/10/2018Taking to the skies

Network Rail’s commitment to driving innovation is best encapsulated by its latest scheme involving high-definition imagery drones, or UAVs... more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. ... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Spotlight on Coventry Very Light Rail

27/11/2018Spotlight on Coventry Very Light Rail

Olivia Brown, business development officer at Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), an academic department of the University of Warwick, outlines th... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >


Passenger safety: Respect the edge

27/11/2018Passenger safety: Respect the edge

Claire Coward, communications lead at the RSSB, discusses her organisation’s latest passenger safety campaign. Incidents at the platfo... more >
Night Tube: The twilight economy

27/11/2018Night Tube: The twilight economy

Dr David Lutton, executive director of economy and tax at London First, argues that the capital’s night-time economy is just starting its j... more >
Monitoring the performance of earthworks

27/11/2018Monitoring the performance of earthworks

Dr Joel Smethurst, associate professor in geotechnical engineering, and Professor William Powrie, professor of geotechnical engineering, both of ... more >
Introducing iPort

20/11/2018Introducing iPort

Steve Freeman, managing director of iPort Rail, introduces the UK’s newest inland freight terminal. The UK’s newest inland rail ... more >