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Rail receives boost from Levelling Up Fund

More than 100 projects have been awarded a share of £2.1 billion from round two of the government’s flagship Levelling Up Fund, with £672 million set to boost improved transport links.

Some of the schemes include upgrades to railway stations and rail infrastructure, and improved local rail services.

Other projects will help to develop transport connectivity and promote active travel, including better walking and cycling routes to and from stations.

The projects involving the development of rail include:

  • In Wales, £50 million has been pledged to Crossrail Cardiff. This will help deliver a new line between Cardiff Bay and Cardiff Central Station, improving travel for thousands of people who travel daily between the stations;
  • In Cornwall, nearly £50 million will go towards Mid Cornwall Metro, the creation of a direct train service linking Newquay, St Austell, Truro, and Falmouth, alongside better walking and cycling access to stations;
  • In Devon, there will be £13.5 million for a new railway station on the eastern edge of Okehampton – the West Devon Transport Hub – complete with high quality cycle facilities and EV charging points to better connect communities and promote active travel.   This will complement the Dartmoor Line between Exeter and Okehampton, the first line to be reopened under the Department for Transport’s ‘Restoring Your Railway’ initiative in 2021;
  • In Peterborough, nearly £48 million will fund a new entrance and footbridge for Peterborough Station, creating a new gateway to unlock the city centre for local people, commuters, and visitors; 
  • Barton in North Lincolnshire will receive almost £20 million for transport infrastructure around the town, with improvements to the railway station set to include new cycle parking and bus shelter upgrades;
  • In Shropshire, £18.7 million will accelerate the regeneration of brownfield land into a new waterside development in Shrewsbury, including better transport links into the local railway station;
  • In South London, over £14 million will double the frequency of trains serving Belmont Station on the Epsom Downs Line;
  • In the West Midlands, £20 million will kickstart the delivery of over 500 new homes connecting local people in Willenhall to jobs, parks, and a new railway station;
  • In Northumberland, almost £15 million will build new, high-quality cycling and pedestrian routes between Hexham and Bedlington to give people better, greener routes to work, major transport hubs, and tourist attractions. 

For more information on the Levelling Up Fund, go to https://levellingup.campaign.gov.uk/