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'No more waiting' for faster trains - Deputy PM

The Government is promising to cut journey times between Manchester and Leeds to 40 minutes by 2025.

It says money is being made available now to improve road and rail links across the Pennines.

The Deputy Prime Minister believes the region doesn't have to wait for the High Speed HS3 link to be built, in several decades time:

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Manchester buses to introduce 'Oyster-style' pases

Oyster style smart ticketing will be roled out to bus companies around England, starting with Manchester. Credit: PA

Britain's biggest bus companies are to bring in Oyster-style smart ticketing in England's largest urban areas with Greater Manchester passengers being the first to get the ticketing.

The ticketing has been a feature in London for some years.

To be introduced in 2015, the scheme will also benefit Tyne and Wear, Merseyside, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire as well as the city regions of Nottingham, Leicester and Bristol. In the West Midlands nearly 30 operators are already part of the Swift smart multi-operating ticketing scheme.

The initiative involves the Stagecoach, First, Arriva, Go Ahead and National Express companies and represents a multi-million investment. The technology will allow smaller bus operators to be included and provide a platform to extend the system to other transport modes, such as trams and trains.

Arriva buses in Manchester will be introducing the scheme. Credit: PA

Millions of people in our biggest city regions will benefit from this transformational initiative to provide London-style smart ticketing. It will deliver an even bigger programme and wider benefit than the capital's Oyster system.

Bus operators share the aspirations of our city regions to become growing economic powerhouses and we know high quality public transport is an important part of making that happen

– Chief executives of bus companies involved.

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Government 'pleased' to have supported Rochdale scheme

I am pleased the Department for Transport has been able to support this scheme. It will make bus travel more attractive in Rochdale, promoting growth and cutting carbon. Redevelopment of the existing bus station site is expected to bring some 1,500 new jobs into the town.

– Minister of State for Transport Baroness Kramer
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