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£2bn funding pot announced for Wales and Borders rail

Network rail apprentices on track

Network Rail in Wales and Borders will receive £2bn from the government to maintain and renew existing infrastructure.

The funding will be spent between 2019 and 2024 and represents a 28% increase on the figure from the last five-year funding period (2014-2019).

Works to be undertaken by Network Rail with the £2bn will include refurbishing a 398km track, bridge renewals and earthworks to improve the resilience of the railway in extreme weather.

Other work to carried out across the Wales and Borders rail network by Network Rail will include the renewal of the Grade II listed Barmouth viaduct and of the pumps at Sudbrook pumping station which pump water from the Severn Tunnel.

The funding will support Transport for Wales’ investment of £5bn over 15 years to maintain and renew existing infrastructure across the network, Network Rail has said.

News of the additional funding has also come after Network Rail earlier this year launched a new advanced engineering apprenticeship scheme on the Wales and Borders line.

It also follows KeolisAmey earlier this year winning a £5bn contract to construct the South Wales Metro and operate the Wales and Borders franchise.

Network Rail Wales and Borders route managing director Bill Kelly added: “This record funding, together with the significant investment planned by our partners Transport for Wales, represents a truly once-in-a-generation opportunity to transform rail services for the people of Wales and Borders.”

The budget for the Wales and Borders route has been set out by rail regulator the Office of Rail and Road.

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