£4bn extra for flood defences - what the Conservative manifesto means for Yorkshire

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The Conservatives have pledged £4 billion for improved flood defences in its 2019 Election Manifesto.

The Tory election campaign document, published today, said that if elected the party would include in its first budget £4bn of new funding "over the coming years".

Boris Johnson  en route to Telford for the launch

Boris Johnson en route to Telford for the launch

Read more: The YP says trust will be the key to how the Tory manifesto goes over with voters
It forms part of a series of green energy initiatives including investing in R&D, decarbonisation schemes, electric vehicle infrastructure including a national plug-in network and gigafactory and clean energy.

The Government has faced criticism for its perceived slow response to the flooding which hit areas around South Yorkshire in recent weeks.

The manifesto also reaffirms the party's commitment to Northern Powerhouse Rail between Leeds and Manchester "and then focus on" extending the scheme to Sheffield, Hull, Liverpool and Newcastle next.

The document also makes mention of the fact that Leeds is the largest city in Western Europe to have no mass transit system.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson inspecting flood damage - Getty images

Prime Minister Boris Johnson inspecting flood damage - Getty images

On HS2, the Conservatives said they will await publication of the Oakervee review into the scheme before adding detail.

It says: "HS2 is a great ambition, but will now cost at least £81 billion and will not reach Leeds or Manchester until as late as 2040.

"We will consider the findings of the Oakervee review into costs and timings and work with leaders of the Midlands and the North to decide the optimal outcome."

It also adds that it will restore many of the Beeching lines, reconnecting smaller towns that were removed from the rail network in the 1960s.

Proposed NPR station in Bradford

Proposed NPR station in Bradford

On the rail franchise system it said the franchise system needed to re-examined, with rail operators needed to be more accountable.

It said: "The railways need accountability, not nationalisation. So we will end the complicated franchising model and create a simpler, more effective rail system, including giving metro mayors control over services in their are"

On fracking, the Conservatives said it would not support fracking "unless the science shows categorically that it can be done safely". The party introduced a moratorium on the controversial energy extraction process earlier in the year.

Although a full page was included on Social Care, there was little detail in terms of next steps, with no announcement on a Green Paper or any act of parliament to bolster the beleaguered sector.

Boris Johnson unveils the election manifesto

Boris Johnson unveils the election manifesto

At the launch event in Telford in the Midlands, Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to "get Brexit done" and re-unite the country as he launched the Tory General Election manifesto.

He sought to characterise the election contest as a battle between "retrograde destructive socialism" under Labour and "sensible one nation Conservatism" under the Tories.

"In this manifesto there is a vision for the future in which we unite our country," he said.

"It is time to unleash the potential of our country and forge a new Britain."

The manifesto also includes:

- A "triple tax lock" with no increases in income tax, national insurance and VAT for five years

- An additional 20,000 police officers and 50,000 extra nurses with the return of nurse bursaries, which were scrapped by the Tories in 2016

- £1 billion of additional funding for social care in every year of the next Parliament

- A new deal for towns, cutting taxes for small high street retailers and installing more CCTV

- An Australian-style points based system to control immigration after Britain has left the EU

- A pledge to make the UK carbon neutral by 2050

- A £1 billion boost for "wraparound" childcare after school time and during the holidays

- Maintaining the pensions triple lock, winter fuel payment and the older person's bus pass

- £2 billion for the "biggest ever" pothole repair programme as part of the national infrastructure strategy

- Scrapping NHS hospital car parking charges for staff working night shifts, the disabled and the terminally ill and their families.

The manifesto document contained few surprises with most of the main policies trailed in advance.

Mr Johnson poured scorn on Jeremy Corbyn's plans for a second EU referendum in which he would remain neutral.

He said that if he was returned to No 10 he would take Britain out the European Union within a "few weeks".

"Get Brexit done and we can focus our hearts and our minds on the priorities of the British people," he said

"We will invest millions more every week in science, in schools, in apprenticeships and in infrastructure, and control our debt at the same time ."