Commenting on the region being cut off as the trainline was blocked again, Luke Pollard said:
“The south west has had enough and I have had enough. The lack of action by government on improving our railway is causing real damage to our economy.
In 2014 we lost £1bn when the trainline at Dawlish was washed away. How much will our region’s businesses lose this time with rail and road closures?
No other part of the country would accept our fragile rail line and neither should we.
It’s time for Ministers to put their hands in their pocket. I want to see funding announced for proper resilience at Dawlish within the next month and a commitment to fund the rail upgrades we need announced in the Autumn Budget.
We need to draw a line between the bluster, promises, sound bites and utter fiction of Ministers to date and demand the funding that we would get if we were in any other part of the country.
Ben Bradshaw and I can’t do this alone we need South West Conservative MPs to find their voices. We need a vocal, united and determined front to show Ministers that funding other regions and neglecting us is unacceptable. People are sick and tired of our railway being blocked, Crosscountry trains being cancelled due to waves at Dawlish and our region being neglected. It is time for the region’s politicians, business and voters to speak with one voice: give us the funding we need and give it to us now.”