Northampton should get a say on east to west railway project, says council

The closest station to Northampton on the East West Rail project is Milton Keynes.
The closest station to Northampton on the East West Rail project is Milton Keynes.

Northampton could be linked up through a new railway route spanning the width of England.

The borough council is trying to make sure the town is heard as part of the East West Rail project, a nationwide plan to link Oxford and Cambridgeshire through to Norfolk Suffolk.

The closest station to Northampton on the route is Milton Keynes - but because both towns are around the same size, the borough council wants to be involved in consultations.

Councillor Phil Larratt, deputy leader at Northampton Borough Council, said: “We are keen to take every opportunity to improve rail connectivity to Northampton, encouraging more people to live, work, and invest in our town.

“New transport links bring new opportunities and we want to ensure that Northampton is involved in discussions about what they will be and how we are able to make the most of them.

“This project will bring a significant boost to the whole region, no matter what the final rail route, and has particular potential to have a positive impact on our economy here in Northampton which is why we will be appointing a representative to the consortium next week.”

The project is being promoted by a group of councils and businesses called the East West Rail Consortium, which Northampton Borough Council want to join.

They will name a representative for the town at a full council meeting on November 6.

A report prepared ahead of the meeting reads: "Northampton... is only marginally smaller than Milton Keynes and currently larger than both Oxford and Cambridge cities. It is therefore considered appropriate that they be represented on a body of this nature."