West rail users 'angry' as HS2 costs rack up
Ministers have been urged not to overlook improving rail links to the Westcountry as they pump £50 billion into a north-south high-speed trains project.
Alison Seabeck, Labour MP for Plymouth Moor View, said in the House of Commons her constituents were "getting angry and frustrated" over the spiralling cost of so-called High Speed 2 (HS2).
She joins Adrian Sanders, Liberal Democrat MP for Torbay, in publicly warning the South West faces being left behind thanks to a scheme that will do nothing to tackle slow journey times and the high fares in the region.
Ms Seabeck said: "My constituents are getting angry and frustrated about the rocketing cost of High Speed 2. At a time when we are expecting winter weather and more flooding, may we have a statement from the Secretary of State for Transport on what he is doing to ensure that the line between Penzance and London is resilient in the face of floods and can be kept open beyond Exeter?"
Tom Brake, Deputy Speaker of the House, replied "substantial investment" had been set aside to improve rail services elsewhere. MPs vote next week on HS2 amid fears Labour will withdraw support.