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Railways: Yorkshire and Humber Regional Planning Assessment

Volume 692: debated on Tuesday 5 June 2007

My honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport (Tom Harris) has made the following Ministerial Statement.

The Department for Transport has today published the Yorkshire and Humber regional planning assessment for the railway (RPA), the latest in the series of 11 RPAs covering England and Wales. The Thames Valley RPA is also being published today.

Copies of the document have been placed in the Library of the House and can also be downloaded from the department’s website at

The Yorkshire and Humber RPA covers the Yorkshire and the Humber planning region, together with parts of Greater Manchester and north Derbyshire which are both included in the wider journey-to-work area of the Yorkshire and Humber region, and the key trans-Pennine corridors, linking the region with Manchester and the wider north-west. The RPA excludes a small part of North Yorkshire where rail services on the Whitby line are closely linked to the north-east network and were covered in the north-east RPA.

RPAs provide the link between regional spatial planning (including preparation of regional transport strategies) and planning for the railway by both the Government and the rail industry, and are designed to inform the development of the Government's strategy for the railway. They look at the challenges and options for development of the railway over the next 20 years in the wider context of forecast change in population, the economy and travel behaviour.

An RPA does not commit the Government to specific proposals. Instead, it sets out the Government's current thinking on how the railway might best be developed to allow wider planning objectives for a region to be met, and identifies the priorities for further development work.

It is the Government’s intention to publish the Wales RPA during the summer.