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Andy Burnham: 'put the North of England to the front of the queue' for transport investment

The Mayor of Greater Manchester has said he's "not surprised" by new figures which suggest that the North West gets less than half the transport investment allocated to London.

Andy Burnham says "packed out, clapped out" trains and poor roads are preventing the Northern Powerhouse from reaching its full potential.

We're making the case to the government to put the North of England to the front of the queue for new transport investment.

We can't carry on as we are, and we can't keep funnelling money into London year on year.

– Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester

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First train passengers cross world's first asymmetric rail bridge

The first passenger train has run across a new bridge which links Manchester's three main railway stations for the first time.

Network Rail says the Ordsall Chord, the world’s first asymmetric rail bridge, will benefit customers across the region.

The bridge is located at the birthplace of modern intercity railways, where in 1830 George Stephenson’s unveiled the Liverpool-Manchester railway.

It is is part of the multi-billion-pound Great North Rail Project, an effort by the rail industry to transform train travel for people across the north of England.

Martin Frobisher from Network Rail witnessed the occasion:

Bus strike over - according to Arriva

Striking bus staff Credit: ITV Granada

Arriva North West say that bus drivers have accepted a deal which ends the ongoing strike action..

Drivers have staged a number of walk outs over pay.

Tonight management have announced that all strikes have been cancelled after union members accepted a two year wage agreement

Arriva North West says unions will ballot drivers and engineers over the deal early next week.

Members of the GMB and Unison had announced a series of strikes across the region in the weeks before Christmas.

“Arriva North West is delighted that our latest offer of a two year pay agreement has been accepted by our drivers. Throughout this dispute we have maintained that talks and compromise on both sides are the only way to find a resolution. This new agreement means our passengers no longer face the prospect of disruption in the run up to Christmas.

We hold our drivers in the highest regard and this pay offer is a demonstration of our commitment to invest in our workforce. We apologise to our passengers for the disruption over recent weeks and are delighted we can now return to delivering the best possible service to our passengers and the local economy."

– Phil Stone, Managing Director, Arriva North West

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New report highlights 'potholes backlog'

Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/PA Images

Roads in the North West are in urgent need of work to repair potholes, according to a new report.

Campaigners say there is a £12 billion backlog of repairs across England and Wales.

Researchers warned that some roads may not be fit for purpose in five years time - and that some may even have to close.

The government says it has committed 6 billions pounds for councils to improve the roads.

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