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Ilkley MP speaks up for businesses over new rail link proposals
Ilkley’s MP has asked for assurances that businesses in West Yorkshire will benefit from the pre-construction phase of the high speed rail link from London to Leeds.
Kris Hopkins told Parliament that businesses in West Yorkshire were “ready, willing and very able” to play their part in delivering the new HS2 high speed rail network. Mr Hopkins, Conservative MP for Keighley, asked Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlan: “Can you give a further commitment to ensure that the financial benefits flowing from the pre-construction phase will be felt along the length of the line, particularly among firms in West Yorkshire, which are ready, willing and very able to assist?”
Mr McLoughlan, who told the Commons he intended to launch the consultation earlier than previously planned, said he had just returned from a trip to the North-East where he had talked to a number of businesses.
He said: “I am aware that many companies up there and in other places along the route are interested in, and prepared to be involved in, all phases of HS2.”
He told Mr Hopkins: “It is a beneficial project for the whole United Kingdom and I can assure you that we will be looking at ways to involve British business in all aspects of the HS2 programme.”
Earlier this month Ilkley’s MP welcomed the announcement that phase two of the £32 billion HS2 high-speed rail link would go ahead.
He said the move would provide a massive boost to the economy in the North.
“HS2 will reduce the journey time from Leeds to London by 50 minutes to one hour and 22 minutes, opening up all sorts of new business opportunities for firms in Yorkshire,” he said.
The announcement was also welcomed by Pudsey MP Stuart Andrew (Conservative) and Leeds North West MP Greg Mulholland (Liberal Democrat).