Metro Mayors Rotheram and Burnham join forces to push ‘Crossrail for the North’

Mayors of the Liverpool City Region and Greater Manchester are appealing to Conservative leader Theresa May and Lib Dem leader Tim Farron to join Labour in backing the plan. Tony McDonough reports

Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, left, with Greater Manchester counterpart Andy Burnham

Newly-elected North West Metro Mayors Steve Rotheram and Andy Burnham are urging all three major political parties to support the HS3 Liverpool to Hull rail link.

The Mayors of the Liverpool City Region and Greater Manchester are appealing to Conservative leader Theresa May and Lib Dem leader Tim Farron to join Labour in backing the plan.

Much of the focus and lobbying in recent times has been on HS2 which will link London with the Midlands and North.

However, business and political leaders in Northern England have become increasingly focused on a West-East rail link which say they can turbo-charge the Northern Powerhouse by linking cities such as Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Hull.

Rotheram and Burnham are calling the link ‘Crossrail for the North’ and are asking for whoever forms the next Government to prioritise the scheme over London’s proposed Crossrail 2.

Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, said: “Liverpool and Manchester built the world’s first ever passenger railway nearly 200 years ago, and there is a compelling logical and economic case for better and faster connectivity between the two cities.

“We desperately need additional capacity and better infrastructure if we are going to realise the full potential of our two great cities and create an urban economy with the critical mass to balance London.

“This is a vital piece of investment for the wider region and for our country as a whole.”

Andy Burnham added:  “The Government has promised a Northern Powerhouse but the road and rail systems of the north are creaking.

“Lack of infrastructure is holding back our economy and we have waited long enough for transport investment. 

“We cannot have a Northern Powerhouse without significant investment in our rail infrastructure.”

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