London’s event industry is set to benefit from £8bn worth of investment in Britain’s railways, which have been announced by the government.
The funding, which has been set aside by Transport Secretary Philip Hammond will be used to buy 2,000 new carriages in an effort to tackle overcrowding. The money will also be used electrifying some lines and to press ahead with the Thameslink programme.
As reported by Event Magazine the UK event industry often comes under fire because overcrowded and unreliable trains make it difficult for people to get to various function venues. Figures indicate that the number of passengers using rail in their journeys has lowered over the past year however, the investment could encourage more people to travel to events using trains.
Details of the Government’s plans involve the delivery of 2,100 new rail carriages by May 2019 which will increase capacity by 17 per cent creating space for an additional 185,000 passengers. It is expected that 650 of these carriages will be delivered by 2014 and 600 of the carriages will be used for the Crossrail project.
Electrification of the lines will happen on commuter services on the Great Western route between London and Didcot, Oxford and Newbury, which will take place over the next six years. There will also be electrification of the lines between Liverpool, Manchester, Preston and Blackpool although plans for the electrification of the London to Swansea line has been delayed.
Finance director at Network Rail, Patrick Butcher told BBC News: “We welcome the fact that the government recognises that the railway plays an important role in driving economic growth and this investment proves that.”