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Drakeford slams UK Government’s ‘neglect’ of rail investment in Wales as ‘pathetic’

01 Feb 2022 2 minutes Read
Mark Drakeford speaking in the Senedd, left. Transport for Wales train. Picture by Jeremy Segrott (CC BY 2.0).

Mark Drakeford has slammed the UK Government’s “neglect” of rail infrastructure in Wales as “pathetic”.

The First Minister said that Wales was not treated fairly by the UK Government and added that calling HS2 an England and Wales project was “absolutely nonsensical”.

He was responding to a question in the Senedd by Labour MS Carolyn Thomas who asked what Wales’ could do to claim its £5bn share of investment it would be entitled to if HS2 was classified as an England-only project.

“Wales is treated anything but fairly when it comes to rail investment by the UK Government,” Mark Drakeford responded, adding that “Wales loses out on billions of pounds’ worth of investment.

“It is nonsensical—absolutely nonsensical—to claim that, because there is a new service from London to Birmingham, somehow that means Wales has had its fair share of that investment.

“Scotland, where comparability is conceded, will have £10 billion to invest in rail infrastructure in Scotland, every penny of which is being denied here to Wales.

“And all of that comes on top of a decade of neglect of investment in the infrastructure here in Wales.”

‘Devolution’

Mark Drakeford added that only 22 miles – or 2% – of the railway in Wales is electrified.

“It is pathetic, and it is the direct result of broken promises by the party opposite,” he said. “There are things they could do, there are things that they should do.”

The First Minister was also asked by former Transport Minister Ken Skates about devolving rail to Wales.

Mrk Drakeford answered: “Well, Llywydd, the union connectivity review that the UK Government established concluded that devolution had been good for transport—that when the decisions were made closer to where they would have their impact, better decisions were made.

“The report underlines the case that successive Welsh Governments have made for the devolution of responsibility in rail to the Senedd, accompanied though, as Ken Skates has said, by the funding that needs to go alongside that responsibility.”

Conservative Senedd Member Darren Millar interjected to say that he too “want to see more investment from both the UK and Welsh Governments in north Wales in the rail infrastructure”.


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Y Cymro
Y Cymro
3 months ago

Investment and Wales is not in any Tory vocabulary let alone manifesto.

Quornby
Quornby
3 months ago

Devolve Wales to Wales in total. Independence ASAP.

Gareth
Gareth
3 months ago

Under funding for Wales, one of the perks of being a part of the UK.

Saes bach
Saes bach
3 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

How about Welsh hospitals for Powys.

Salopian
Salopian
3 months ago
Reply to  Saes bach

You don’t need them there are hospitals in Shropshire. Just look at the Welsh ambulances lined up outside.

Mark
Mark
3 months ago

funny how those tories that get so upset over who’s responsible for the coal tips, keep very quiet about this daylight robbery.

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