Huddersfield Unlimited, the business-led organisation that stands for the town of Huddersfield, has enthusiastically welcomed the recent announcement that it is full-steam ahead for the multi-billion-pound West Yorkshire Transpennine Route Upgrade, calling it a game changer for the local economy.
The organisation’s response to the confirmation this summer by the Department for Transport that work can now proceed on the section of the Transpennine Route Upgrade in and around Huddersfield and the town’s fabulous Grade 1 listed station, is one of delight.
This is particularly because many details that will help further boost the future prosperity for the town of Huddersfield and the wider region have been incorporated into the works, partly in response to detailed feedback Huddersfield Unlimited submitted to the Inquiry, held in November and December 2021, on behalf of itself and its partners.
The huge project was given the go ahead six months earlier than anticipated, fast-tracking progress on the ambitious plans, one of the biggest applications ever made by Network Rail. The go-ahead will completely transform train journeys between Huddersfield, Dewsbury and services further eastwards as part of the route upgrade, and while this set of works deals with a specific part of the line, it is part of the wider Transpennine upgrade which will connect Huddersfield both ways, something Huddersfield Unlimited will continue to press for. The mammoth scheme will locally see twice as many tracks installed, major renovations at Huddersfield, Deighton, Mirfield and Ravensthorpe stations, and the track layout reimagined, to deliver more frequent, faster trains along a cleaner, greener, more reliable railway, helping to support economic growth in the North.
Sir John Harman, Chair of Huddersfield Unlimited, said: “The upgrade of the Transpennine route is a huge investment which will cement Huddersfield’s strategic advantage at the centre of the North’s main transport corridor. Huddersfield Unlimited is delighted that work in the area will finally be able to begin. We will continue to press for investment in the whole East-West route which is vital to the entire northern economy.”
Huddersfield Unlimited is seeking insightful expert input and reviewing all the information currently available surrounding the whole Transpennine Route activity to identify opportunities to push for ongoing investment, adding to the economic wellbeing for Huddersfield and West Yorkshire.”
Huddersfield Unlimited does acknowledge that there will inevitably be a period of disruption whilst the works take place over the next few years and that, unfortunately, some of the disruption will coincide with other town centre works being performed by Kirklees Council.
However, the organisation points out that patience will pay off and the end result will provide a much-improved link from Huddersfield to both Leeds and Manchester as well as further to York, Liverpool and beyond.
Not only will there be improved rail services to and from Huddersfield, but Huddersfield Unlimited is keen to emphasise that it believes the strategic location of Huddersfield, just to the east of the Pennines and almost central on the line, will allow new businesses to choose the town as the location for their northern stronghold and bring with them new jobs for the residents of Huddersfield.
For more information on how Huddersfield Unlimited is supporting business and investment in the town, visit: https://www.huddersfieldunlimited.co.uk/what-we-do/