Cross-party MPs unite to call on government to back Crossrail 2

More than 50 members of parliament from across the country and political parties have urged the government to urgently back Crossrail 2. The 59 MPs, who represent constituencies from as far north as Newcastle upon Tyne and as far south as Portsmouth, have called on the government to back the project now so that it can progress in parliament and begin carrying passengers by 2033.

The cross-party group of MPs, which include dozens from across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and Surrey, have written to the chancellor, Philip Hammond, and the transport secretary, Chris Grayling, urging them to give a boost to the whole country by giving Crossrail 2 the go-ahead.

Their letter highlighted that the benefits of Crossrail 2 would be felt across the UK, boosting the economy by up to £150bn. Such a commitment, the MPs say, would show that the country is preparing for growth and will give firms the certainty they need to invest in the skills needed for the long-term future.

Some 200,000 jobs and 200,000 new homes will be supported as a result of Crossrail 2, as well as 60,000 supply-chain jobs and 18,000 apprentices across the country, making a major contribution to solving the housing crisis and supporting key employment centres. More than 30% of these new homes would be outside London.

The letter of support follows hard on the heels of the calls of senior business leaders, homebuilding and property leaders and local authorities across the south east who have also written to the chancellor and transport secretary backing Crossrail 2.

The new railway is a scheme of national importance, with London businesses indicating they are prepared to contribute through local taxes and levies. London has shown how it can meet half the total cost - unlike other nationally significant projects that do not receive such levels of local funding. But now the project needs a commitment from ministers - as recommended by the National Infrastructure Commission last year.

David Lammy, MP for Tottenham and chair of the Crossrail 2 all party parliamentary group, said: “Crossrail 2 is absolutely crucial to the future growth and prosperity of our capital. Without Crossrail 2 our train and tube networks won't be able to cope with future demand and the project is vital to addressing the housing crisis and providing jobs and apprenticeships opportunities across London and the south east. The importance of Crossrail 2 is reflected by the huge cross-party support calling on the government to give their backing to the project. Crossrail 2 will have a hugely positive impact on the lives of people across London and the wider south east and as chair of the APPG I will continue to work with MPs, businesses and local authorities to make the case for Crossrail 2”

Sir Alan Haselhurst, MP for Saffron Walden and chair of the West Anglia Taskforce, said: “I attach the greatest possible importance to Crossrail 2 and its beneficial implications for London and for the region I represent. I would be delighted if an early government commitment could be made.”

Tom Brake, MP for Carshalton and Wallington, said: "Rather than sitting on its hands as it has done during the chaos caused by the Southern Rail strikes, it’s high time the government gave backing for transport infrastructure which will help increase jobs, stimulate the local economy and relieve stress for the thousands of commuters who call the south east home."

The government’s backing will allow Transport for London (TfL) to develop the railway’s design in order to submit a hybrid bill to parliament to get the necessary powers to construct the railway. Crossrail 2 could then be carrying passengers by 2033.

If you would like to contact Andy Walker about this, or any other story, please email