Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Feb-Mar 2022 number 148
Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Feb-Mar 2022 number 148
Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Nov-Dec 2021 number 145
During a debate brought by Liz Twist MP, and alongside fellow North East MPs, I raised the lack of quality bus services in the North East.
Image copyright, Parliamentary Recording Unit, 2021.
At a recent street surgery in Oxclose, the inconsistency and infrequency of buses was brought up many times. Reliable and frequent bus services connect people to the economy and are vital for areas like Washington which risk being stranded. However, our Local Authorities are having to bear the brunt of the Government’s public transport cuts as the Government has slashed covid funding for the Metro. With the Leamside line snubbed in the Integrated Rail Plan, bus provision is even more important. I will continue to press the Government on this issue and work with colleagues like Bridget Phillipson and Paul Howell regarding the reinstatement of the Leamside line.
Sharon has received a response to her letter calling on Secretary of State for Transport to urgently support the Tyne and Wear Metro during the Coronavirus pandemic.
You can read the letter by clicking on the image above
Sharon also signed a letter alongside other North-East MPs to Grant Shapps MP, Secretary of State for Transport on this issue.
Sharon signs letter calling on Secretary of State for Transport to urgently support the Tyne and Wear Metro
Sharon has joined 10 other North East MPs in writing to Grant Shapps MP, Secretary of State for Transport, asking him to implement an urgent support package for Tyne and Wear Metro similar to the support offered to bus and national rail services.
That letter joint can be read here:
As many of the signatories have also done, Sharon wrote to Grant Shapps MP personally, in order to raise the same issue.
Sharon's letter can be read here:
‘’The limits on public movement rightly put in place to combat this awful disease have had a profound impact on passenger numbers and fare income for the Tyne and Wear Metro.
‘’For those of my constituents who are key workers either in the NHS or other frontline services, or working in the supermarket and delivery sectors, and rely on public transport, it is essential that the Metro continues to operate.
‘’The Government has rightly put in support measures for bus and national rail services and must now urgently do the same for the Metro.’’
Today, Sharon submitted a letter to the Department of Transport’s Call for Evidence on light rail. Sharon has also sent a copy of this letter to the Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling.
Please click on the image above to see the letter in full
Washington is the largest conurbation in England without a rail link, despite having a population of almost 70,000. While our Metro is one of our national treasures, residents of Washington do not benefit directly from it, and I believe an extension is well overdue. This is an issue myself and my constituents are passionate about.
The letter provides an outline of numerous reasons that the Metro should be extended;
Incentivise investment and growth, while promoting higher employment rates and more opportunities for not only Washington but Tyne and Wear as a whole
More accessible options for post-16 education at the many colleges, sixth form centres and training campuses around the region, while post-16 education institutions in Washington would become more accessible and attractive to students in the region
Incentivise residents to use a more sustainable mode of transport, helping our environment and congestion in the region, where 70% of Washington residents are currently car-dependent
Proposals suggest re-opening existing transport infrastructure. The disused Leamside Line would easily connect Washington to stations at Pelaw and in Sunderland.
"Despite being left behind so often, Washington has so much potential. I believe that an extension of our Metro to Washington is an opportunity to make the future of Tyne and Wear a prosperous one."
UPDATE: 21st March
On Thursday 21st March, Sharon raised this in the House of Commons during Transport Questions. You can watch Sharon's question here
Sharon receives a response from Jo Johnson MP, the Minister of State at the department for Transport about the Tyne and Wear Metro.
Click on the image above to read the letter.