Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland
Further measures to better connect Scotland and the UK announced
- Also published by:
- Department for Transport
The transport secretary has announced new measures to better connect Scotland including plans for improvements to the A75 between Gretna and Stranraer.
Improvements to A75 among of measures announced to better connect Scotland and the UK.
- Scotland will see a range of initiatives to support transport projects which will boost the economy and spread opportunity across Scotland and the UK
- Includes £8 million to develop plans for improvements to the A75 between Gretna and Stranraer
- Strengthening transport connections will enhance business, leisure and tourism - making it easier to trade, create jobs, and ensure shared economic growth across the UK
Work on road improvements and rail upgrades will boost business and improve connectivity across the UK, Transport Secretary Mark Harper announced today (7 December) in his response to Lord Peter Hendy’s Union Connectivity Review.
The UK Government has committed funding to deliver targeted improvements to the A75 between Gretna and Stranraer, starting with providing £8m to the Scottish Government to support their business case development.
The Government’s response also includes actions to protect vital domestic air routes, alongside ways to boost overall connectivity between Wales, Scotland and England.
These projects will explore options to improve transport links which strengthen connections between communities and across the UK, helping to drive tourism and grow the economy.
Transport Secretary, Mark Harper said:
“We are committed to delivering growth opportunities across all corners of our United Kingdom, including looking at ways to improve the A75.
“Today we are announcing more investment into projects that will boost connectivity and enhance transport connections across Scotland. These projects will identify schemes that can bring economic benefits to people across the UK.
“I’d like to thank the Scottish Government for working collaboratively with us on these projects and I look forward to continuing to work closely with them on improving UK transport connectivity.”
Improved connectivity across the UK will promote economic growth by increasing access to a wider pool of skills and opportunities.
Projects dedicated to enhancing connectivity across Scotland include:
- Providing £8m to the Scottish Government to develop options to improve the A75 and committing funding to deliver targeted improvements, such as alleviating pinch points, following the Scottish Government’s identification of a preferred option – bypassing the villages of Springholm and Crocketford.
- Committing funding for dualling the A1 between Morpeth and Ellingham, helping to improve an important route between England and Scotland, as was previously announced in Network North.
- Funding Network Rail to study options for enhancements to improve capacity and journey times on services between England and Scotland.
- Reforming domestic aviation policy by updating Public Service Obligation (PSO) policy to include routes that operate to and from different regions of the UK, rather than just into London as is currently the case. This means routes throughout the UK will be protected by the UK Government’s PSO policy to ensure minimum levels of air services that are socially and economically vital for the region.
Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said:
“The UK Government is spreading opportunity and prosperity to all corners of our country and I’m pleased to see plans for delivering improved transport connectivity taking huge strides forwards.
“Hauliers, commuters, leisure travellers and communities will be delighted to see UK Government funding to kick-start work by Transport Scotland to identify improvements on the A75, the main artery linking Northern Ireland to the north of England through south-west Scotland.
“The UK Government is also committing funding to explore ways to boost rail connectivity between Scotland and England. And we’re investing in upgrades to the A1 and protecting vital air routes throughout the UK.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the Scottish Government on this ambitious package of proposals to link up the UK much more effectively - boosting our economy, creating jobs and levelling up opportunities around the country.”
The response to the Union Connectivity Review marks an important step in increasing UK connectivity and delivering the strong, reliable transport connections people depend on every day. The review was conducted by Lord Peter Hendy as he called for improved transport connectivity across the UK. The review was the first UK-wide multi-modal strategic transport assessment in a generation.
Lord Hendy has welcomed the Government’s response and said:
“I welcome the Government’s response to my review and the announcements in it. My recommendations outlined the next steps that the government should take to identify investments that will improve connectivity and support economic growth, job creation, house building, social cohesion and sustainability. The government’s response shows that they are taking the necessary actions to move this work forward and demonstrates their commitment to improving UK connectivity.
“I am also pleased to see that partnerships between the UK government, and each of the Scottish government, Welsh government, and Northern Ireland Executive have underpinned this work and I look forward to seeing them continue in the future.”
Latest News from
Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland
Scottish Secretary reacts to GDP for Q4 2023 and December 202329/02/2024 13:25:00
Alister Jack says boosting business and continuing to drive down inflation is key to long-term growth.
John Lamont puts focus on farming innovation on SW Scotland visit15/02/2024 13:20:00
Scotland Office Minister sees how £21 million UK Gov investment will benefit Digital Dairy Chain at Scotland's Rural College and meets team at Monitor Farm.
Scotland boosting UK with more than £2 billion spend in defence annually09/02/2024 13:15:00
Defence spending with UK industry by the Ministry of Defence in Scotland is currently £2.09 billion, official statistics have revealed.
Crucial summit over CalMac ferry services08/02/2024 12:25:00
Island communities affected by poor ferry services have raised their concerns direct with CalMac, thanks to a UK Government summit.
New Year Message01/01/2024 11:15:00
Scottish Secretary Alister Jack looks back on 2023 and ahead to 2024
Scots recognised in King's New Year Honours List01/01/2024 10:15:00
The Scottish Secretary has congratulated the many people from across Scottish society who have been recognised in the New Year Honours List
UK Government levelling up funding in Scotland approaches £3bn26/12/2023 12:20:00
Local and regional investment is delivering real dividends for communities across Scotland.
Scottish traditions to be formally recognised as UK joins UNESCO Convention26/12/2023 10:22:00
Public encouraged to propose festive traditions, such as Christmas pantomime and Hogmanay, for formal recognition alongside other mainstays of UK culture.
Plan to move government roles out of Westminster brought forward and new headquarters unveiled12/12/2023 12:16:00
Government brings forward target to relocate 22,000 roles out of London from 2030 to 2027. Aberdeen, Darlington and Greater Manchester are to host second headquarters for major departments.