The vision for the future of transport in the UK.
Grant Shapps today (Thursday 27 May 2021) outlined his vision for the future of transport in the UK – and said it can power us to become the biggest economy in Europe.
In a wide-ranging speech to travel bosses, passenger groups and the media, the Transport Secretary set out an ambitious blueprint for rail, roads and greener travel.
At the centre of this vision are plans to ‘level up’ the country by driving jobs and opportunity to the Midlands and North. These include £317 million for upgrading rail lines, and recent reforms to improve bus and rail services across the country.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:
More than £29 billion has been spent on transport across the North since 2010, with national projects like HS2 creating tens of thousands of highly skilled jobs, and work to reconnect towns stripped of their rail connections during the Beeching rail cuts.
The speech followed yesterday’s groundbreaking announcement of £401 million for faster, greener and more reliable rail services – the biggest investment in the network since the Victorian era.
And it comes just one week after the government launched Great British Railways as the new public service body to own the tracks and direct the train operators, bringing better service and value to commuters.
The Transport Secretary added:
Looking to the future, he hailed Britain’s transport network as key to helping the country recover from the pandemic, and emphasised bold green targets backed up by innovation and technology – from electric power and autonomous vehicles, to space travel, drones, superfast and universal internet access, and the use of big data.
He went on to say:
The ambitious speech also pledged to get the basics right, with the bus strategy offering simpler fares, easier information and greener services, and more on-demand buses in rural areas.
Hosted by thinktank Policy Exchange, the event took place both virtually and live, with audiences able to listen in on Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.