HS2, the proposed high-speed rail link between Birmingham and Crewe will be opened in 2027 – six years earlier than planned.
The London to Birmingham route was originally due for completion by 2026, and to Manchester and Leeds by 2033.
The Chancellor, George Osborne announced that ex-head of the CBI business group John Cridland would chair a new body called Transport for the North, which will look to improve transport links across the North.
The new timetable means a part of the second phase of the project is due to open only a year after the first phase from London to Birmingham is due to be operational.
“Bringing forward this part of the HS2 route by six years is a massive step in the right direction for the Northern Powerhouse where high-speed rail will play a big role in connecting up the entire region with the rest of the country,” the chancellor said.
Journey times between Crewe and London would be cut by 45 minutes once the new route was open.
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