Government accused of all talk and no action as Mayor casts doubt on likelihood of Leeds tram link

The Government's desire to deliver Leeds its first tram link has been cast into doubt after the official cancellation of the HS2 rail link.

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 4:45 pm

Speaking to the YEP, West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin questioned the Government' s desire to deliver the city its first mass transport link.

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"The West Yorkshire mass transit is something we have discussed with government for quite some time." she said "There's been 60 to 70 announcements regarding mass transit and not a shovel in the ground. Today has really challenged my trust in government."

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West and South Yorkshire Mayor's Tracy Brabin and Dan Jarvis have questioned whether the Government can now be trusted following more "broken promises". Picture: Gary Longbottom.

This comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson officially confirmed the cancellation of the Eastern Leeds leg of the HS2 rail service as part of today's newly published Integrated Rail Plan.

The Eastern leg of the HS2 had promised to revolutionise rail travel across Leeds and West Yorkshire, with a new station and improved travel times promised.

"It's an insult to the people of West Yorkshire. We were promised by the Prime Minister, by the Chancellor Rishi Sunak and by Grant Shapps." said Mayor Brabin "It is the hope that kills you because this is a real watered down, semi-skimmed, crumbs off the table version of what we were promised."

Discussed as an alternative to the HS2 train link is a mass transit scheme which would see Leeds finally awarded a tram link.

Leeds currently stand as the biggest city in Western Europe without a mass transit system and would join Northern cities such as Manchester and Sheffield to have a tramline. Picture: Peter Byrne/PA Wire.

Leeds currently stands as the largest city in Western Europe without a tramline.

Today's IRP has promised that Leeds would receive £200m of 'immediate funding' to plan and build a mass transit system.

Dan Jarvis, Mayor of South Yorkshire, has followed Mayor Brabin in questioning the belief those in the north should have in the Government.

"Today should have been a landmark day as we discussed finally unlocking our full potential but instead it is a day of yet more broken promises." he said "The Government are fooling nobody and no one in the north should believe a word they say again."

Hopes of a Leeds tramline have existed for over two decades with the original 'Leeds Supertram' project dating back to 2001 before being officially scrapped in 2005.

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