1. ITV Report

Government confirms HS2 proposed route will connect Crewe and Manchester

Artist Impression of HS2 Photo: Press Association

The government has announced the second phase of the HS2 rail service will connect Crewe to Manchester and the West Midlands to Leeds.

In an announcement on Tuesday, Transport Secretary Chris Greyling will say the routes will provide a major boost to the future prosperity of the country, as well as being is a clear signal the UK is open for business.

"HS2 is an ambitious and exciting project and the Government is seizing the opportunity it offers to build a transport network fit for the 21st century, one that works for all and makes clear to the world that Britain remains open for business.

"The full HS2 route will be a game-changer for the country that will slash journey times and perhaps most importantly give rail passengers on the existing network thousands of extra seats every day. They represent the greatest upgrade to our railway in living memory."

– Transport Secretary Chris Grayling

The Department for Transport acknowledged many intercity services are currently "full to overflowing", but said customers will benefit from more services and extra seats once the HS2 high-speed rail service is completed.

Officials also said the frequency of commuter and intercity trains to Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds could "almost double" to 48 per hour.