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Transport - New carriages promised


The Chancellor’s pre-budget report promised to bring forward delivery of 200 new railway carriages earlier than was planned and stated that this will contribute towards British jobs in the present crisis.

The carriages are destined for use in the Thames Valley, around Bristol and on longer distance inter-urban services in Northern England.

But if the government is sincere about wanting to keep British manufacturers in business and retain skilled engineers in this country, they will need to take immediate steps to enable those carriages (plus the 1,100 others that have been promised) to be built in Britain.

This means an unequivocal financial commitment from the Treasury. The banking collapse has shown that nothing less than a rebirth of manufacturing and apprenticeships, with a return to national government support, will meet the needs of the next generation.