Rail Minister Theresa Villiers visited south Wales yesterday (21 June 2012) to restate the government’s commitment to supporting Wales’ transport infrastructure.
Visiting the Welsh government’s headquarters in Cardiff ahead of the UK government’s forthcoming announcement on rail investment, the minister met Assembly members to discuss rail services in Wales.
Speaking after her visit, Theresa Villiers said:
We are overseeing the biggest rail upgrade programme since the Victorian era because we believe a better transport system can play a vital role in spurring economic growth. We want Wales to share in the opportunities that improved rail services can provide.
Last year, we confirmed plans to electrify the railway line to Cardiff, a move that will bring real passenger benefits including significant time savings between London and south Wales and cleaner and greener train services. New trains will also add to passenger comfort and further speed up journey times.
We are also supporting the Welsh government in developing a business case for the valley lines. Electrification of the valley lines network was singled out as a priority in the budget, with a decision to be taken this summer.
Notes to editors
The minister is also visiting the Severn Tunnel today (22 June 2012) to view ongoing maintenance work there. Last year the government announced plans to redouble the Swindon to Kemble line which will significantly reduce delays when the Severn Tunnel is closed for maintenance causing trains to be diverted.