MP and minister to discuss station

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EREWASH MP Jessica Lee has been promised a meeting with the Transport Secretary to discuss opening a train station in Ilkeston.

In his autumn statement last week, Chancellor George Osborne announced plans to spend £5bn improving transport networks throughout the UK – including £1bn on the railways – over the next three years.

In response to the announcement, Miss Lee asked if opening an Ilkeston station ‘could form part of the Government’s plans’.

“I welcome the commitment to improving the infrastructure in the UK,” she told the House of Commons.

“To maximise that opportunity, re-opening the train station at Ilkeston would really help us in Erewash, assisting businesses and commuters.”

Transport Secretary Justine Greening has confirmed she will meet Miss Lee but no date has yet been fixed.

After the debate in the House of Commons last Tuesday, Miss Lee said: “The purpose of the meeting is to put the pieces of the jigsaw in front of her.

“Essentially I am looking to obtain a level of support from her that this is feasible.

“Transport infrastructure is a key part of the Government’s strategy so I’m going to put it to her that, as part of that, a station in Ilkeston could bring jobs and investment to the area.”

Miss Lee also intends to tell Ms Greening about the 1,300 petition slips we have received as part of the Advertiser’s Back on Track campaign to highlight the level of public support.

She also plans to meet with Derbyshire County Council for an update on the plans.

Simon Spencer, cabinet member for highways and transport at the authority, said: “It’s great to hear that Jessica Lee is to meet with the Transport Secretary about Ilkeston station.

“We want to see a train station for Ilkeston and are keen to work with everyone involved to make this happen.

“We remain fully committed to providing a railway station for Ilkeston.”

Mr Osborne gave the go-ahead for 35 road and rail projects across England, as part of the autumn statement, including the widening of the A453 in Nottingham.