THERE is a big problem with road traffic congestion throughout the country and despite substantial sums being spent on new roads and major road improvements there appears to be no sustainable answer.

One of the reasons for this situation could well go back more than 50 years ago to Dr Beeching and his branch rail closures which cut off many sizeable towns from the rail network and meant that commuters and freight had no alternative ways of travel.

Before making the decision to proceed with the HS2 high speed railway scheme I do not recall Parliament even considering the viability of re-opening any of these lines at a cost comparable with that set aside for HS2.

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I feel sure that road traffic congestion could be under less pressure if such action was taken.

D Wearmouth, Shildon