On Thursday 18 January, Neil Parish MP asked the new Minister of State for Transport about railway improvements in the South West.
Neil asked Jo Johnson MP what progress has been made on rail improvements in the region. The Minister told Neil that the Conservative Government is investing £400 million in the South West's rail network, including a brand new fleet of trains for services to Devon and Cornwall which will be in service later on this year.
As part of his follow up with the Department for Transport, Neil then asked about the second passing loop along the Axminster to Exeter line, which runs from Waterloo. Improvements to this line would benefit the whole South West region, as well as providing a more regular and reliable commuter service for local residents living in Axminster. Mr Johnson assured Neil that the Government would continue to provide assistance to Devon County Council who are progressing the scheme locally.
Speaking about the exchange afterwards, Neil said "I welcome the Conservative Government's commitment to rail improvements in the South West. The Axminster to Exeter line is an arterial commuter route for many of my constituents. Improving the line would provide the infrastructure necessary to support the area which has the highest level of growth to the east of Cranbrook. I will continue to work my Conservative colleagues in Government and Devon to provide the support necessary for improvements to this line."
You can read the full exchange here.