Following questioning by Polegate MP Maria Caulfield, the Secretary of State for Transport has set out plans for rail improvements in Sussex, including announcing an imminent decision on a second Brighton mainline.
During Transport Questions in Parliament yesterday (17 November), Maria asked Secretary of State Chris Grayling for his policy on improving the rail network in Sussex. In response, the Transport Secretary said that he was looking very hard at how improvements could be stepped up and went on to set out plans to make a range of substantial investments to the network including, lengthening platforms, upgrading power and signal systems and a new Thameslink depot.
Welcoming these improvements, Maria put it to the Secretary of State that a second mainline between Sussex and London would improve rail capacity and journey times for local residents.
Encouragingly the Secretary of State announced, “I’m well aware of the degree of campaigning that’s behind the Brighton Mainline 2 concept. It’s something that my honourable friend the Rail Minister and I are discussing, I’m aware we have a report that’s sat on the desk for much too long, and I intend to make sure that it does not sit on the desk for very much longer.”
Commenting Maria Caulfield MP said, “I am pleased that the Secretary of State has set out the planned improvement works on the network and I am hopeful that following the efforts of myself and campaigners a favourable decision will finally be made on BML2. I understand that this could be made within two weeks and I will continue to put the case for a second mainline to Ministers.”