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High Speed 3: Bradford

Volume 617: debated on Thursday 17 November 2016

Northern powerhouse rail, which is sometimes called HS3, is the Government’s vision for dramatically faster and more frequent rail journeys across the north, to help to build the northern powerhouse and strengthen the British economy. With Transport for the North, we are investigating the benefits, both to passengers and to the economy, of northern powerhouse rail serving key markets such as Bradford.

It is absolutely essential that a city the size of Bradford has a station stop on the HS3 route, otherwise the economic benefits in West Yorkshire will be only for Leeds, which will be like throwing apples into an orchard that is already full. Will the Minister therefore commit to making sure that Bradford is on the route so that the Bradford district can also benefit from the northern powerhouse?

We are expecting Transport for the North to publish its priorities for northern powerhouse rail development early next year. I will make sure that the voice of my hon. Friend is heard in that planning, and I will keep him informed of progress.

Will the Minister give a good talking to to the infrastructure tsar—who waxed lyrical on the radio this week about how important it was to link Oxford and Cambridge—about concentrating on the links across Yorkshire and Lancashire? That is the emphasis we want. We do not want Huddersfield left off the map on any occasion.

It is impossible to think that Huddersfield would be left off the map on any occasion. Obviously, we are investing in transport in all parts of our country, including connectivity in the north, and between Oxford and Cambridge.