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Disappointment over lack of Lincoln rail investment

Lincoln Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate Lucy Rigby has expressed her disappointment after the city’s rail infrastructure missed out on a £9.4 billion Government investment.

The investment will see a number of lines across the East Midlands electrified, which leads to faster, more reliable and new trains.

Additionally, the Government are hoping to implement electrification of lines to encourage more companies to use freight trains.

Lines currently set to benefit from the work are those around Nottingham, Sheffield, Leicester, Newark North Gate and London St Pancras.

Transport Secretary Justine Greening said: “These plans to increase capacity and shorten journey times on intercity, commuter and freight services are absolutely key to securing prosperity in the East Midlands in the decades ahead.”

However, there are no plans as yet to improve the rail lines between Lincoln and any of the above destinations.

Lucy Rigby feels it is unfair Lincoln has been left out of the plans completely.

She said: “Despite the fact that Lincoln has shockingly poor rail services (to the capital and locally) and Lincoln’s neighbouring towns and cities are benefiting from these plans with electric trains and faster journeys, we seem to have missed out completely.

“To add insult to injury, the plans appear to involve more freight trains coming through Lincoln – so more hold-ups at the level crossings at High Street and the Brayford, not to mention more pollution and noise as they’re diesel trains.

“When Lincoln has been totally left out like this, it does you make me wonder why Karl McCartney’s colleagues on the Midland Main Line were able to get a much better deal for their towns and cities.”

Alteration to the lines are not expected to be completed until 2014-19, and the rail industry now need to measure the scope of work needed to undertake the transformations.

Managing Director of East Midlands Trains, David Horne, said: “We welcome the news that the Government has today given the go-ahead to fund both the electrification and the upgrading of the Midland Main Line.

“Electrification will provide a smoother, quieter and quicker ride for passengers, cutting journey times while crucially delivering more capacity to cater for future growth.

“Not only will it be good for the environment, the project will create hundreds of jobs during the construction period, providing an estimated £450m of wider economic benefits to the cities and towns we serve.”

The Lincolnite reached for comment to Lincoln MP Karl McCartney, but did not hear back by the time of publishing this story.