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Henry Smith MP: 300,000 people to benefit from Brighton Line upgrade

Crawley MP Henry Smith, on the upgrade to the Brighton Main Line and its impact on local residents.



This week Network Rail announced that they have secured Government funding for the next stage of proposals to upgrade a key part of the Brighton Main Line, which could benefit the hundreds of thousands of passengers – many Crawley commuters – using this service each day and allow more trains to run in the longer term between London, Gatwick Airport, Three Bridges and the Sussex coast.

Following confirmation of funding from the Department for Transport, Network Rail can now put together detailed designs for the project, which would see the construction of a series of new grade-separated junctions north of East Croydon station to remove the ‘Croydon bottleneck’ where several routes to and from central London converge.

More from Henry Smith MP: Find out how community groups & charities can win £20,000

These extra tracks and flyover junctions would benefit the around 300,000 people using this service on a daily basis. The new junctions are like motorway flyovers and will replace the existing flat junctions, where trains have to wait at red signals to allow others to pass in front, causing congestion, delays and frustration.

Last year I hosted an event in Parliament on the issue of improvements to the Brighton Main Line; working with organisations including Gatwick Diamond Business and the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership to ensure we have the infrastructure our area needs in order to succeed in the years and decades ahead.

I look forward to seeing these proposals in detail and to participating in the next meeting of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Southern Rail later this month. £300 million has been pledged by the Government to boost infrastructure resilience and reliability on key routes in the south east of England.

This includes recruiting 300 additional maintenance and operations staff, the deployment of Digital Railway technology to help reduce delays, as well as major work to renew and upgrade the railway itself.

Henry Smith MP
Crawley Constituency

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Henry Smith

Henry Smith MP: Celebrating the Crawley Town Community Foundation

In his article this week Crawley MPp Hnery Smith hails the CTCF



Earlier this year I was delighted to hail the contribution to our local area of Crawley Town Community Foundation.

Their mission statement is ‘to engage, inspire and empower people through sport and football’ and is something which is being done right across town.

This includes delivery of National Citizen Service for 15 to 17 year olds – which I have been pleased to speak about in the House of Commons and present awards to young people participating at Broadfield Stadium – in addition to football training sessions and the Premier League Primary Stars programme for school pupils, higher education through the BTEC National Diploma in Sport, and walking football for the over 50s; the Community Foundation’s work serves different ages and backgrounds.

From this September, the Community Foundation will be offering a two year Foundation Degree in Community Football Coaching & Development. The course is designed for anyone seeking to achieve a university degree while gaining experience for a career in the football industry.

The programme is being delivered in partnership with the University of South Wales, and all students will be enrolled as a student at that university. All lectures, seminars and tutorials are delivered in a supportive and inspirational club environment through online material.

On a separate note, as September comes to a close we are approaching the end of Blood Cancer Awareness Month. As Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer I have heard a number of accounts of how Macmillan Cancer Support nurses help people beating and living with cancer. Given the charity’s work I am grateful to Crawley Town Football Club for holding a Macmillan Coffee Morning on Friday 28th September, from 9am to 1pm in Redz Bar at Broadfield Stadium.

Henry Smith MP
Crawley Constituency

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