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Leamside Line

Volume 693: debated on Thursday 29 April 2021

As the Minister said, the proposal to reopen the Leamside line in full is being considered as part of the integrated rail plan. We were told to expect an answer in March, then it was April, and now we are almost in May without any further news, so when can my constituents expect to find out if the Government intend to follow through on their promise to level up from Westminster to Wearside?

We certainly intend to follow through on our promises to the people in the north-east and Wearside, something that decades of Labour disinterest in that area have failed to deliver. Ahead of finalising the integrated rail plan, we are fully considering the evidence from all stakeholders; we have had an awful lot. I just remind the hon. Lady, who I know supports this scheme, that it was driven by local campaigners, at the start with a guy called Christopher Howarth, who was a Conservative campaigner. There was little interest from her party or its representatives before he got involved.