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Regular news: Issue 605 18 Sep 2012

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DfT presses ahead with major scheme devolution despite "unnecessary bureaucracy" claims

The DfT is to go ahead with its plans to devolve decision-making on major local schemes after a consultation showed broad support for the proposals.

Under the move, local major transport schemes will no longer be individually approved and funded by Government. Instead, funding will be allocated locally according to population, allowing priorities to be decided by newly established Local Transport Bodies made up of local transport authorities, local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) and other...

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Your Comments:

23 Sep 2012

The problem with this proposal is where a project has both local and regional benefits, and may also have national benefits. Norman Baker's Constiuency has just such an example, with the Uckfield - Lewes rail reopening proposal.

As one of the lines that closed in the post Beeching era, we cannot blame the wicked Doctor personally for this one, though it was in his report. Uckfield to Londo was retained for commuter traffic, and currently the line justifies an hourly train and four peak period extras, all to London Bridge as this line alone remains diesel operated.

The rub is that East Sussex CC are at best lukewarm to the rail restoration, and the DfT fails to understand that the 6 peak trains per hour that go as far as Hurst Green could all have portions to continue to the South Coast, so relieving the Brighton Line.

There is a more ambitious scheme to restore the rail route through Croydon and Lewisham which is fraught with problems, so the base scheme offers the best benefits. And these have major regional benefits and national benefits.

So the question is, who leads and funds such a project.

The outline proposal has significant benefits to many potential users.

There are problems ahead with this policy!