Fighting for improved transport to the coast

Scarborough Train Station
Scarborough Train Station

Calls have been made to the Government to invest more in Scarborough’s transport infrastrucutre.

Scarborough Council’s deputy leader, Cllr Derek Bastiman, made the pleas through the All Party Parliamentary Group for Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire which met Transport Minister Norman Baker.

Coun  Derek Bastiman from Scarborough Council

Coun Derek Bastiman from Scarborough Council

The group heard evidence from a range of businesses, local enterprise partnerships and councillors from across the region, who shared their experiences of transport issues and possible solutions.

Representatives spoke of a historical underinvestment in the region’s transport infrastructure, which the group heard was now impeding the prospect of future economic growth.

The Minister was pressed about localising transport funding decisions by members of the group who argued that local representatives were better placed to make the decisions which could unlock major investment in construction, renewable energy and manufacturing.

Following the meeting the All Party Parliamentary Group will now be developing an ‘Actions for Government’ document providing a number of possible solutions to key transport challenges across the region.

Cllr Bastiman said he welcomed the long list of transport investment for Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire which had been presented by the Minister. However, he said he was disappointed to hear none of the initiatives encompassed North Yorkshire or Scarborough.

He said: “With significant multi-billion pound investments coming forward for the coast from the potash and wind farm sectors and the Yorkshire coast’s continuing success as a premier tourist and business destination it is essential that transport communications are developed to support this.

Speaking about the rail links in particular, Cllr Bastiman added: “If as suggested the East Coast Main line will only be electrified between Liverpool and York and not all the way to Scarborough, then it is essential that the existing services are maintained and improved upon.

“We need an extended timetable and more carriages at peak periods to deal with the growing demand. The economic and employment opportunities for our coast are just over the horizon, we need the infrastructure to support them.”