We are in complete agreement with the Government that levelling up must be a national priority ahead.

Across the globe, there is evidence that transport infrastructure is one of the most effective means of delivering real change on this front. The Government are right to point to the transport-led regeneration of Birmingham that has taken place as a result of HS2 in their White Paper, and we welcome their commitment to a series of King’s Cross style regeneration projects, which will include investment in railways.

We regret that the Levelling Up White Paper does not include more substantial proposals to further invest in high speed rail infrastructure beyond the confines of the Integrated Rail Plan, one of the most impactful ways to drive meaningful levelling up outside of the South East.

Beyond HS2, we urge the Government to put in place a long-term plan to bring the benefits of high speed rail to all nations and regions of Great Britain – for this would truly level up our country.