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Government investing £1 billion into new train technology affecting line near Grantham

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The government are investing more than £1 billion into train signalling technology.

The southern section of the East Coast Main Line, which runs from London's King's Cross to Stoke Tunnels, which is south of Grantham, will receive this technology on its trains.

This new technology will replace outdated Victorian infrastructure with cutting edge digital signalling technology, which means faster, safer and more regular trains for people.

LNER train on the East Coast Main Line. (14249111)
LNER train on the East Coast Main Line. (14249111)

Grant Shapps, the transport secretary said: "“While union bosses waste time touring television studios and standing on picket lines, I am busy getting on with the job at hand and modernising our railway.

“This £1 billion investment will allow us to replace unreliable Victorian infrastructure with cutting edge technology which will mean fewer delays and more regular services for millions of passengers.

“The world is changing and, despite the best efforts of unions, I am determined to help our railway change with it.”

The funding will remove the current lineside signalling in place and replace it with the European Train Control System (ETCS), which brings signalling into train drivers’ cabs and provides them with real-time, continuous information throughout their journey.

The new in-cab technology will create a more responsive and a more resilient railway.

Also, the system will constantly monitor the train’s speed, it will also create a safer railway.

As well as the many passenger benefits, the East Coast Digital Programme will deliver a much-needed financial boost to the industry and, over its lifetime, is 42 per cent cheaper than the current system.

It will also help the Government towards its Net Zero goal by decreasing carbon emissions by 55,000 tonnes – the equivalent of more than 65,000 one-way flights from London to New York.

Toufic Machnouk, director of industry partnership for digital railway for Network Rail, said: “We are delighted to have been given the go ahead for this ground-breaking programme that will transform the capability and resilience of the East Coast Main Line and be a key enabler for the wider network.

“The ECDP is uniquely bringing together all elements of track and train through a pioneering industry partnership that is working beyond boundaries in a deep collaboration.

"We will upskill our people and use new technology to improve the way we work for the benefit of passengers and freight customers”.

This investment is an example of how the Government aims to bring the train industry into the 21st century, a week after train workers striked.

One third of the UK population live within 20 minutes of a station on the East Coast Main Line, making the line one of the UK's busiest rail routes.

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