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'Strong and stable cancellation'Prime minister Theresa May and transport secretary Chris Graying made “the [cancellation] decisions about electrification on the midland main line and the line between Cardiff and Swansea on the simple basis that spending hundreds of millions or billions of pounds to achieve the same journey times in the same trains was not sensible”.

[Chris Grayling, House of Commons, 19 April:] The trains on the Great Western route are already in operation, delivering services to people in Swansea, for whom it is a great and important investment. Trains on the midland main line require the addition of one engine to provide a little bit of extra acceleration, but they already exist, and will be great for that line as well.

On that basis, if he had been in post earlier, Mr Grayling could not have approved any electrification west of Airport Junction. Were he to approve Transpennine North electrification, that would invite questions as to why that was ‘sensible’, compared to the option of using electro-diesel trains, possibly with the ‘addition of one engine’.

Any defensible case for TPN electrification would seem to depend on

  • the madcap Northern Powerhouse Rail ‘new line via Bradford’ being cancelled
  • implementation of contemporaneous electrification to Hull and Middlesbrough (which is not being actively discussed).

Written by beleben

May 2, 2018 at 2:03 pm

Posted in Politics, Railways

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