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Conservatives win overall majority – their rail policies in full

The Conservatives have won an unexpected overall majority in Parliament, and so are in a position to put their manifesto into action.

Their policies on rail were essentially a continuation of their policies as part of the Coalition government, with its pledges as follows:

  • “We will invest a record £13bn in transport for the north. We will electrify the main rail routes, build the Northern Hub, and provide new trains for the North.”
  • “That is on top of our £50bn commitment to build High Speed 2 – the new North-South railway linking up London with the West Midlands, Leeds and Manchester – and develop High Speed 3 to join up the North.”
  • “We will improve rail connections to East Anglia, delivering ‘Norwich in 90 minutes’ and ‘Ipswich in 60 minutes’.”
  • “The biggest investment in rail since Victorian times”
  • “We will invest £38bn in our railway network in the five years to 2019. Electrification of the railways is a key part of our investment programme, with work already underway across the north, the Midlands, and south Wales; there are plans to go further in the rest of the country, including East Anglia and the south west. In addition to rolling out our national high-speed rail network, with High Speed 2 and High Speed 3, we will complete the construction of the new east-west Crossrail across Greater London, and push forward with plans for Crossrail 2, a new rail route running through London and connecting Surrey and Hertfordshire.”
  • “We will keep commuter rail fares frozen in real terms for the whole of the next Parliament – regulated fares will only be able to rise by Retail Price Inflation, and train operating companies will not have any flexibility to raise ticket prices above this.”
  • “We will also introduce smart ticketing and part-time season tickets and require train companies to improve compensation arrangements for passengers when trains are more than a few minutes late.”
  • “We are investing millions of pounds in fitting out trains with new wi-fi equipment and improving mobile phone signals, which will benefit passengers on trains across England and Wales.”
  • “We will build new roads and railways in a way that limits, as far as possible, their impact on the environment. This includes investing £300m in cutting light pollution from new roads, doing more tunnelling, building better noise barriers and helping to restore lost habitat. We will also replace locally any biodiversity lost in the construction of High Speed 2.”

(Photo shows David Cameron returning to Downing Street this morning. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire)

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