Page last updated at 17:21 GMT, Monday, 26 January 2009

Call for fast east-west rail link

Rail campaigners are backing a 100mph fast train route across the centre of England linking Oxford and Cambridge.

The fast train route would go via Bicester, Aylesbury, Milton Keynes and Bedford with integrated links to connect Ipswich and Norwich to Swindon.

The plan involves a combination of existing, upgraded and reopened lines.

Peter Lawrence, of Railfuture, said: "We want to link fast growing communities without causing road congestion or crossing London."

The group believes the route would encourage inward investment from industry and tourism as well as providing much-needed additional capacity for passengers and freight.

"At a time when environmental concerns are top of the agenda, it's more important than ever to invest in green transport such as rail," Mr Lawrence said.

"In Wales and Scotland miles of new railway are being built. Why not in England?

"We're calling on the East of England Assembly and development agency to work with their colleagues in the South East and continue to press for this strategic rail link".

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