I am delighted to be taking up this role. Working at Network Rail I know the challenges we have ahead with capacity on the railways - they are real and we need to take action now. I also know the significant benefits that improved journey times between our northern cities will bring not just to the north, but the UK economy as a whole.
HS2 is the right solution. It is vital for both passengers and the economy and will put the UK in a different league in terms of infrastructure. My first priority will be to rigorously scrutinise costs to ensure they remain under control.
HS2 presents a strategic opportunity for this country and I am determined to make sure we take it by delivering a railway that will allow business and communities to prosper in the long term
More top news
Residents who live near Epping Forest are complaining after a private hunting club was given a licence to shoot deer in the forest.
Police have launched an appeal for help to find a 12-year-old girl missing from Lewisham.
Christmas shoppers have hit central London for the first Sunday in December.