Agenda item

Integrated Rail Plan Update

To consider the progress update on the IRP technical report, TfN’s independent assessment of the economic impact of the IRP and an update on local contributions.


Lead: Tim Foster




5.1          Members received the report for the Interim Programme and Strategy Director who highlighted the key points contained within his report.

5.2          Members raised a number of issues relating to their constituent areas.

5.3          On the issue of co-sponsorship the Board was keen for a robust model to be put into place and emphasised the importance of maintaining a strong voice for the people of the North (via TfN) into the process of delivery.  The Board was clear as to the importance of being engaged with the process through the co-sponsorship role but emphasised the need for the North’s voice to be heard and listened to.

Cllr Gittins noted the intention for some of the Sponsorship Board meetings to be held in London and requested that all meetings should be held in the North. 

5.4          Mr. Mark Rawstron stated that TfN need to be more deliberate and reinforce its messages and get its points across.  He added that the voice of business needs to shape those messages given that a key driver for TfN’s work is realising the North’s economic potential.   

5.5          Mayor Brabin raised a number of issues including the changes in journey times suggested in the IRP documentation for some trips.  She also flagged the importance of TfN’s analytical data and the need to undertake a levelling up analysis impact of the IRP versus TfN’s preferred choice.  Cllr Edwards highlighted the importance of non-NPR schemes not being forgotten.

5.6          Mr. Rob Mcintosh stated that the IRP opens up near term investment opportunities that will make a difference and that advantage should be taken of those opportunities.

The Chair agreed with Mr. Mcintosh and stated that he and the Chief Executive had recently met with Sir Peter Hendy and Mr. Andrew Haines. He emphasised the importance of working together with Network Rail and of recognising that major investment proposals go through a process of evolution as their detail is developed.

5.7          The Chief Executive emphasised that under the co-sponsorship arrangement TfN retains the ability to provide statutory advice to government (over and above its input through the co-sponsorship Board), which protects and respects the role of the Board.  He was positive about TfN’s role within the Sponsorship Board, stating that it allows TfN the opportunity to work with DfT to address issues jointly.  In particular he noted that TfN’s technical capabilities provides the basis for some of those issues.

He further stated that Board as owner of the Strategic Transport Plan needs to keep an oversight of the work being done through the co-sponsorship Board in order to pick up linkages to other parts of the region not directly covered by the IRP, as these connections are important. 

He stressed the importance of the individual Programme Boards associated with specific schemes and the need for these to have a local input. 

5.8          In response to the question on the role of evidence and data, the Interim Programme and Strategy Director stated that this could not be confirmed until the Grant Funding Agreement has been finalised. He explained that the fundamental principal in the discussions with the DfT so far is the importance of a shared/consistent base-line. 


1)   That Board agrees to the co-sponsorship arrangements as set out in Section 4 of the report and agrees the key priorities for TfN in 2022/23 as outlined in Section 6.

2)   That Board notes the arrangements being agreed for continued analytical support to be provided by TfN to the NPR Programme.

Supporting documents: