MP calls for speed over rail plans

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Mark Lazarowicz, MP for Edinburgh North and Leith, has urged the UK government to draw up plans as soon as possible for new high-speed rail lines.

It has been estimated that the potential economic benefits of cutting journey times to London could be as high as £20 billion for Scotland.

Under the coalition’s current plans, high-speed lines are only projected to run from London to Manchester, and have been scaled back from original UK-wide plans.

Speaking at Westminster in a major debate on High Speed 2, he said: “The case for High Speed rail makes economic and environmental sense but the real benefits will only be seen if High Speed lines extend to Scotland.

“Edinburgh stands to benefit economically too in a big way as one of the main UK tourist destinations and Scotland’s leading financial centre with strong links to London and the rest of Europe.”