I joined all Sheffield’s Labour MP’s in writing today to the Government calling on them to abandon plans which could see the direct rail link between Sheffield and Manchester Airport scrapped. In a letter to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, we said “The long-established direct rail link between Sheffield and Manchester Airport is a vital part of maintaining Sheffield’s international connectivity.”
The proposal to scrap the direct link is included in two of the three options being considered in a Department for Transport consultation on improving services in and around Manchester.
In our letter we argue that “any review of Manchester services should not be undertaken in isolation but must consider the impact on the wider northern region”, and urge the Transport Secretary to retain the direct link after the consultation closes on 10th March 2021, saying that “the loss of a direct rail connection will drive more road traffic onto already congested trans-Pennine routes.”
We went on to argue “Sheffield needs international connectivity to attract inward investment and enable business to improve productivity. The long-established direct rail link is a vital part of that and strongly supported by local business” and that “our world-class universities in Sheffield also rely on this link to recruit international students who are worth more than £200 million a year to our local economy”.
Read our letter here: