‘Shovel ready’ bus and rail projects got the green light in chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement last week, receiving over £1bn of funding.

Christmas came early for many scheme promoters in the passenger transport sector last week when chancellor George Osborne delivered his Autumn Statement. As part of a £30bn National Infrastructure Plan designed to protect the weak economy and secure jobs, “shovel ready” bus and rail projects received over £1bn of funding.

Key projects that have been financed by the plan (see panel) include electrification of the TransPennine rail route between Manchester and Leeds, extension of the Northern Line to Battersea and a third round of the Green Bus Fund. Additionally, rail fare rises in January will be capped at RPI+1% rather than the RPI+3% increase previously announced by the Department for Transport.

Where the money is going


  • £290m for electrification between Manchester and Leeds.
  • £270m to develop the East-West link between Oxford and Bedford.
  • £390m for rail infrastructure enhancement and renewal works.
  • £80m towards the purchase of 130 new carriages for Southern.
  • £45m to extend smart ticketing.

Metro/Light Rail

  • Support for the extension of the Northern Line to Battersea.
  • £4m to accelerate the upgrade of the Tyne & Wear Metro.
  • £12m towards four additional tram vehicles for Sheffield.


  • £34m towards a £41m Bus Rapid Transit system for Bristol.
  • £25m for ‘Green Bus Fund 3’.
  • £15m towards two new park and ride sites in York.
  • £7m towards a new £11m bus interchange for Rochdale.
  • £32m towards a £43m cross city bus package for Manchester.


  • £1bn to tackle congestion and improve the national road network.

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