Labour appoints industry heavyweight to lead expert independent review to ensure “Britain can deliver rail infrastructure fit for the century ahead”, by staff reporter


Labour’s Shadow Transport Secretary, Louise Haigh has appointed an industry heavyweight Juergen Maier CBE to lead an expert review aimed at delivering rail and transport infrastructure fit for the century ahead.

The independent review, driven by experts and rail infrastructure innovators, will explore how rail infrastructure delivery can be better managed to boost jobs, improve value for money, and drive investment and economic growth across the country.

Launching the expert review, Haigh warned “a lost decade of Conservative delay, mismanagement and broken promises has seen costs soar, growth and investment harmed, and damaged confidence in Britain’s transport infrastructure.”

Chaos and indecision over HS2 led to costs soaring and ambition slashed, while years of failure on rail infrastructure upgrades such as the Midland Mainline has robbed communities of the benefits of better services.

Chaired by former Siemens CEO Juergen Maier CBE, the independent review will draw on a wealth of industry expertise in transport infrastructure and urban transport delivery, business and growth, to learn lessons and present recommendations on delivering transport infrastructure better, faster and more cost effectively.

The review will look at how you to transform the delivery of transport infrastructure of a decade of failure and therefore unlock growth and connectivity to support a strong, sustainable economy.

The review will make recommendations to Labour’s top team on key changes which could be made to the planning system; the capacity of public bodies to effectively deliver infrastructure; the opportunities to unlock wider growth around projects, deliver value for money, and how to boost the British supply chain and attract private investment.

Labour’s Shadow Transport Secretary, Louise Haigh MP, commented: “Britain has immense potential, but thirteen years of failure has held our country back.

“A lost decade of Conservative delay, mismanagement and broken rail promises has seen public money wasted, growth and investment held back, and damaged confidence in Britain’s transport infrastructure.

“Britain deserves much better than this.

“Labour are serious about learning the lessons from the staggering failure of the last decade and will draw from the brightest and best from around the world to learn lessons and share expertise on delivering transport infrastructure fit for the century ahead.

“We do not accept the managed decline of our railways and our vital infrastructure. The country that gave the world the railways should still be leading the world; under Labour we will make sure it does.”

Review chair Juergen Maier CBE added: “There is no doubt that poor quality rail infrastructure is holding Britain back, hampering productivity, and deterring business investment.

“To turbocharge growth, quality infrastructure is not a nice-to-have, it’s a must-have in this fast-moving new industrial age.

“That’s why I welcome Labour’s focus on learning lessons from the last decade, and I am delighted to lead this review.

“The more all political parties focus on the practical solutions needed, the better for the country.”