Billions of pounds of funding from a scrapped HS2 line will be redirected to the North East under new plans.

Rishi Sunak finally confirmed the axing the high-speed link from Birmingham to Manchester after weeks of speculation during a Tory party conference speech at lunchtime.

The Prime Minister only mentioned one North East project in the speech, building a relief road to the Northumberland town of Blyth, but a document now seen by The Northern Echo reveals how the government intends to spend the money in our region.

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It says: “The North East is the perfect example of a region that received no benefit from HS2 but will win from the funding under Network North.

“This includes major funding boosts to create stronger public transport networks north of the Tyne and in the Tees Valley, more buses, reopening rail stations and major funding for new and improved roads, including dualling the A1 and delivering the Blyth Relief Road.”

A major project annouced is the reopening of the Leamside Line, which the government has committed to for the first time.

The A1 north of Morpeth in Northumberland will be dualled to Ellingham, the document says, after a decision on the project just last month was delayed once more.

A new train station will be built in Ferryhill, County Durham connecting the town to the train network.

The Blyth relief road will see a new route from the A189 spine road in Northumberland to the A193 at South Beach to reduce congestion on the two main roads into the coastal town.

The North East and Teesside will receive a total of £2.8bn through the sustainable transport funding including an extra £1.1bn through HS2.

The plans also mention “certain schemes” will be chosen to reopen railway lines closed under the Beeching cuts of the 1960s, but do not name which lines could be reopened. The Leamside Line through County Durham is one such route which campaigners have been hoping to see reinstated for decades.

More general plans include more funding to resurface roads and fill potholes, improving accessibility of train stations, moving towards London-style contactless and smart ticketing on public transport networks and maintaining the national £2 bus fare until the end of 2024.

It comes after Mr Sunak axed the HS2 line from Birmingham to Manchester after weeks of speculation.

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He said costs had “more than doubled” and said he “every single penny” initially earmarked for the high-speed rail link would be redirected to other projects.

The Prime Minister told the Tory Party conference in Manchester on Wednesday (October 4): “I am ending this long-running saga. I am cancelling the rest of the HS2 project and in its place, we will reinvest every single penny, £36 billion, in hundreds of new transport projects in the North and the Midlands, across the country.

“This means £36 billion of investment in the projects that will make a real difference across our nation.”

North East announcements from the Government today

  •  75 per cent more funding for improved connectivity: Benefiting millions of people living in the towns and suburbs around Newcastle and Teesside, funding new roads in the Tees Valley.  
  •  Dualling A1:  Funding to dual a section of the A1 between Morpeth and Ellingham.  
  •  £460 million for smaller road schemes:  Including the Blyth Relief Road. 
  •  Reopening stations: Communities in the North East will be reconnected, including a new station at Ferryhill, Co Durham. The Leamside line, closed in 1964, will also be reopened. 
  •  Funding for contactless and smart ticketing: Supporting seamless travel by enabling contactless or smartcard payment. 
  •  Fixing potholes: Funding to combat potholes causing misery for drivers in the region.  
  •  £2 bus fare extended: More buses to industrial estates and business parks. 
  •  £1.8 bn for the North East from the City Regional Sustainable Transport Settlement 2 and HS2 funding. 
  •  £1 bn for Tees Valley.