Advocating for transport investment in Parliament

Photo showing George Freeman MP, Daniel Zeichner MP, Jo Churchill MP, Peter Aldous MP, Tom Keith-Roach - Astra Zeneca, Paul Kenward - British Sugar, Tim Hawkins - Stansted Airport, Cllr Stephen Robinson, Cllr James Jamieson

Copyright © 2021 Andrew Wiard

This week we were in Parliament speaking to regional MPs, council and business leaders at the East of England All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) annual reception, hosted with the East of England Local Government Association (EELGA).

A roadmap for achieving sustainable, climate positive and inclusive growth throughout the region was presented to Government. We also heard from George Freeman MP, Minister for Science, Research and Innovation on how the East is a hot-bed of innovation and how targeted public sector investment can kickstart a chain of wider private investment in skills, jobs and investment.

We worked with EELGA to identify the four key priorities for investment in the East of England in the roadmap: delivering a climate positive region, ensuring sustainable and inclusive economic growth, improving connectivity and decarbonisation and securing the financial resilience of councils.

Andrew Summers, Strategic Director at Transport East speaking to other attendees at the Parliamentary reception

Copyright © 2021 Andrew Wiard

The roadmap supports the offer we made to Government in our own Comprehensive Spending Review submission. Improving the region’s connections is an essential priority, with investment needed to enhance the rail network, decarbonise transport and supercharge the region’s broadband and 5G/4G coverage.

The APPG also argues that increases to local council funding should be provided over a longer time span. Councils should also be given sufficient time to prepare good quality bids and greater flexibility and freedom to generate their own income. We support this as it would allow councils to be able to plan, deliver and maintain more integrated transport that works best for their places.

APPG Co-Chairs, Peter Aldous, MP for Waveney, Daniel Zeichner, MP for Cambridge and Cllr Linda Haysey, Chair of the East of England Local Government Association presented the roadmap.

Linda Haysey, Chair of EELGA commented:

“We are making a positive case for the government to invest in the East of England’s infrastructure, establishing the region as a global gateway for trade, powered by innovative partnerships that deliver sustainable economic growth.

“Our region needs increased investment overall, and for this investment to be delivered in the right places, with local flexibility, to reap the greatest economic opportunities.”