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Press Releases

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IT’S TIME TO PUT SCOTLAND ON THE HIGH SPEED RAIL MAP

[ 29-07-2011 ]

Scottish Chambers of Commerce (SCC) have today called on the UK government to show more ambition and plan now to bring High Speed Rail (HSR) to Scotland.  In submitting its response to the Department for Transport’s consultation on High Speed Rail, SCC have said that the Government’s planned route between London and Birmingham with future connections to Manchester and Leeds does not go far enough.  Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said: 
 
“As Scottish businesses fight to bring our country out of recession, now is the time for Government to put the infrastructure in place to ensure our nation’s future economic success.  Without doubt, the construction of a transformational High Speed Rail network in the UK will help to deliver on this objective and Scottish Chambers are fully supportive of the first phase of this campaign to link London and the West Midlands. 
 
“However if High Speed Rail is to transform the fortunes of the Scottish economy, then we need to plan now for its construction in Scotland.  The UK Government’s current proposition that HSR stops at Manchester and Leeds lacks the vision and ambition that this project needs.  Instead, the UK and Scottish Governments must fully plan and commit to the construction of HSR between Scotland and England’s key cities as part of their present plans. 
 
“High Speed Rail is a fantastic opportunity for the UK and its full benefits, economic, social and environmental, will only be realised if the whole of the UK is connected.  Our message to Government is: let’s get full speed ahead between London and Birmingham, but that is not the end of the line.  Scotland cannot afford to get left behind and now is the time to plan for our high speed future.” 

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