Chris Elmore, MP for Ogmore, pressed the Secretary of State for Wales, Simon Hart MP, for more investment in Welsh rail networks during Wales Questions on Wednesday as funding continues to be proportionately low compared to other areas of the UK.
The Welsh rail network accounts for 11% of the total railway system in the UK, yet the railways in Wales have received a miserly 2% of UK Government funding over the last decade.
In the most recent Budget, Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP cut £1bn from Network Rail’s income. This will have a huge impact on investment in Wales via the Barnett Formula.
In the UK Government’s priority listings for the Levelling Up Fund, Bridgend has been placed behind wealthier constituencies such as Richmond, meaning it could miss out on vital funding to invest in local infrastructure.
Chris Elmore, MP for Ogmore, said:
“The Welsh Secretary likes to boast about ‘levelling up’ and investment, but time and again we see the UK Government turn its back on Ogmore when we need funding, and it’s no different with rail investment. It has been a lost decade for Welsh railway infrastructure.
“I pressed the Welsh secretary to set out how he would address this lack of investment from the UK Department of Transport to Wales. All he could respond with were a few pre-rehearsed lines about the UK Government being totally committed to levelling up in Wales. Empty rhetoric from a government that has run out of ideas.
“It’s time for the UK Government to actually commit to what it keeps promising, and allocate Ogmore the funding it so rightly needs and deserves so that we can invest in our infrastructure.”