MPs Andrew Gwynne, Angela Rayner and Navendu Mishra have joined together to push the Government for a new passenger rail link between Stockport and Ashton-under-Lyne, stopping in Denton and Reddish South.
The three MPs represent the communities that the new service would benefit and are supporting a bid to the Restoring Your Railway Fund, which will distribute £500 million of funds to reinstate axed local services and restore stations.
This bid was put forward by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) and Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council. It also has the full support of Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council.
The bid proposes two options; one for a heavy rail service between Stockport and Manchester Victoria via Denton and Reddish South and the other a light rail service connecting with the existing Manchester-Ashton Metrolink line at Ashton Moss in the north, and with the proposed Stockport-East Didsbury line in the south.
The proposals also open possibilities of new stations along the line at Audenshaw, Thornley Lane and Heaton Norris.
The three MPs have written to Transport Minister Chris Heaton-Harris urging the Government to give the proposals its “fullest support in the next wave of bids to be considered”.
Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, said:
“This is a really exciting proposal which would be a real game-changer for the communities that I represent, who have been under-served by the rail network for far too long.
“The Government have made much of their plan to “level up” the North and these proposals would help to do just that, so I really hope that they support them and make this vision into a reality.
“I will continue working with the Government, my fellow MPs, TfGM, Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and our local councils to push for this service.”
Angela Rayner, MP for Ashton-under-Lyne, said:
“I’m really excited about the possibility of a new passenger rail link between my hometown of Stockport and Ashton-under-Lyne, the constituency where I now serve as MP and live with my family.
“Folk in the North are far too used to being let down when it comes to us getting investment in projects that really will make a difference to so many people.
“If the Government are serious about their commitment to ‘level up’ the North, they will offer the support needed to make these proposals happen.”
Navendu Mishra, MP for Stockport, said:
“I’m delighted that this proposal has been put forward and, having heard from the Transport Minister on this issue, I’m encouraged that we are well on the way to achieving our goal.
“A new passenger link will help to breathe life into parts of Stockport and reconnect and reinvigorate areas of this community that have been underfunded by this Government for too long.”