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Backing for East Lancashire rail plan
PLANS to hand the management of rail franchises to local authorities have been given the backing of a public transport boss in Lancashire.
County councillor John Fillis believes the creation of a new Rail North body would help establish prestige projects like the reinstated Todmorden Curve and improvements to the Clitheroe-Blackburn-Manchester line.
But there has been no confirmation whether the move would lead to Lancashire passengers enjoying the same discounts as Greater Manchester and Merseyside.
City travellers and those from neighbouring boroughs enjoy cut-price local journeys because they operate their own passenger transport executives.
Coun Fillis, county council cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “One of the many opportunities presented by local management of rail would be to ensure future rail development ties in with councils' wider objectives to develop a fully integrated transport system.
“There is potential for rail to more closely support economic development and transport plans, which could, for example, mean timetables being better integrated across rail and buses and extending opportunities for people to access work or training.”
Coun Fillis said he wanted to ensure all partners had an equal say if Rail North becomes a reality.
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