Over the last few months thousands of Fleetwood residents have signed the Back On Track petition calling on the Government to reinstate the railway in Fleetwood.
Last week I handed the petition in to the Prime Minister at No 10 Downing Street
More than 3,000 people signed the petition, believing, like me, that the absence of reliable good quality transport links, particularly the fact Fleetwood is not on the rail network, remains a major barrier to the regeneration of the town. Without a rail link we cannot attract development, investment or tourism which is needed to transform our area.
Government statistics have shown that only £1.2bn of capital investment on the railways went to the North West in 2016/2017, with £6.7bn going to London in the same period.
Constituents say they’re deeply exasperated that London continues to receive billions in investment, while they are stuck either in traffic jams, or on overcrowded and outdated trains. For years a dogged and passionate campaign has been continued by local groups to see the Fleetwood branch line reopened, but the government has failed to seriously entertain the prospect. Fleetwood deserves better.
I am now collaborating with Blackpool Transport and other agencies across the area to bring rail back to Fleetwood, connecting us to Poulton and therefore the rest of the country. On behalf of Blackpool Transport I’ve written to the Government urging them to commit the Department for Transport to fully funding the estimated £1.5 million cost for a feasibility study, and to implore them to work constructively with Blackpool Transport to complete the study, and move forward with its recommendations as soon as practically possible.
It is completely wrong that the people of Fleetwood are missing out on career and education opportunities because the transport system is so poor. It’s wrong that people are struggling to access services and health appointments outside of the town because public transport isn’t available. And its wrong that other areas of the country attract millions to develop transport infrastructure whilst coastal towns are ignored and forgotten about.
If you would like to contact me about this issue (or indeed anything else you need help with) then please call my office on 01253 490440.