The Department for Transport this week published their Autumn Update of rail enhancements programmes. Within the document, the Ely Area Enhancement Capacity has progressed through as a scheme to develop. The Ely North rail junction serves a number of routes in the area including Norwich to Cambridge, Norwich to Liverpool via Peterborough, Ipswich to Peterborough, King’s Lynn to London, Birmingham to Stansted, Freight services from Felixstowe and King’s Lynn. Members of Parliament, local councils, the LEPs, Combined Cambridge and Peterborough Authority, rail and freight operators have all been pressing government to secure the upgrade. In 2017 £9 million was secured for the feasibility study with a commitment given by the then Secretary of State Chris Grayling that the scheme would go ahead. The government is committing £48 billion on improving railways, rolling out new trains and upgrading hundreds of miles of track.
South West Norfolk MP Liz Truss who has led the campaign to secure the upgrade of the Ely North rail junction commented ‘I am extremely pleased to note that Ely is viewed as a scheme to develop. Obviously the final costings and design work need to be completed but this is a critical junction in East Anglia serving a multiple of routes and the sooner we progress this scheme, the benefits will be substantial for all. Increased services on both the Thetford and Downham Market lines, improved freight connectivity, are vitally important for a thriving economy. I have been working with colleagues, local councillors and business groups to secure this upgrade and will continue to maintain the pressure to see the scheme delivered. ’