Britain runs on rail: New figures show the full extent of the rail industry’s contribution to the West Midlands.(Network Rail)

Britain runs on rail: New figures show the full extent of the rail industry’s contribution to the West Midlands

Birmingham New Street and Grand Central – platforms from above.(Network Rail Image)

  • Network Rail supports over 12,000 local jobs in the West Midlands and last year £524.54 million was spent with over 340 local businesses
  • London Midland customers have benefitted from over £400 million of investment – including four new stations in the West Midlands (Bromsgrove, Stratford upon Avon Parkway, Coventry Arena and Bermuda Park)
  •  £100 million spent every single week by Network Rail on improving the railway in Britain

The rail industry, including Network Rail and London Midland, is working to deliver a record £50 billion plus investment in Britain’s railway. This investment supports jobs, growth and drives development, re-generation and unlocks housing supply in the West Midlands.

Martin Frobisher, route managing director at Network Rail said:

“As part of delivering record investment in the railway, Network Rail is supporting over 12,000 jobs across the West Midlands and spending money with over 340 local businesses.

“The railway is vital to economic growth. That’s why Network Rail is spending £100 million every week in Britain on our Railway Upgrade Plan. On the West Coast main line route, including the West Midlands, we are spending £1.9 billion annually to provide a safe, reliable railway. A great example of this plan in action is £100 million investment in the upgrade of track and signalling in Bromsgrove.”

£100m Bromsgrove line upgrade – Nov 2016

£100m Bromsgrove line upgrade – Nov 2016.(Network Rail Image)

As part of the Railway Upgrade Plan Network Rail reconfigured the track, points and crossings in the area around the station, and has brought into use the new signalling between Birmingham and Ashchurch in Gloucestershire, in preparation for electrification to Bromsgrove. This will increase the number of trains serving Bromsgrove station from December 2017.

Martin Frobisher added:

“We intend to keep contributing to the economy in the West Midlands, working with local businesses and creating jobs for local people on improving the railway to bring more connectivity and even more prosperity to all.”

Richard Brooks, London Midland’s commercial director, said:

“Over the last eight years London Midland customers have benefitted from over £400 million of investment including four new stations in the West Midlands and over £100 million of new trains. Further improvements are being made this year with more station investment and free wifi on our long distance routes”

Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators as well as Network Rail, said:

“Train companies and Network Rail are working hard together to improve journeys for the millions of passengers who use the railway every year in the West Midlands. The result is going to be more trains running to more places, more often, creating new opportunities and supporting jobs. It will include upgrades to the track and signalling at Bromsgrove in Worcestershire. These improvements will help keep everyone moving and help to support a growing local economy.”

The delivery of record, £50 billion plus investment in Britain’s railway is being showcased as part of a public awareness drive known as Britain Runs on Rail, which aims to increase understanding among taxpayers and passengers about how their money is being spent to improve the railway. Britain Runs on Rail is organised by the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators and Network Rail.

Notes:
• Across the West Midlands, Network Rail supports 12,242 local jobs with 3,472 people directly employed and a further 8,770 jobs in our supply chain
• On London North Western (LNW) route, which covers the West Coast main line between London Euston and Carlisle and the Chiltern Mainline between Birmingham and London Marylebone, Network Rail spends £ 1.90 billion annually on operations, maintenance, renewals and enhancements to provide a safe, reliable railway.
• Across Britain, Network Rail supports an estimated 154,350 jobs with 36,000 people directly employed and a further 117,750 jobs in our supply chain.
• During 2015/16, Network Rail spent £7 billion with 3,435 companies across Great Britain, 2500 of which were small or medium enterprises.
• 99% of our Railway Upgrade Plan work is being undertaken by UK-based companies.
• Every day, moree than 4.5 million rail journeys are taken in Britain.
• For more information about how rail is vital to economic growth visit: https://www.networkrail.co.uk/who-we-are/jobs-and-growth/