THERESA MAY has slapped down Conservative backbenchers in the South with a commitment to deliver the HS2 rail line to Yorkshire.
The Prime Minister told The Yorkshire Post the proposed high speed rail line connnecting London, Birmingham and Yorkshire is “very important” for the country.
Mrs May has come under pressure from some of her own backbenchers, who see no benefit from HS2 for their consituencies, to use the Conservative General Election manifesto to delay or even cancel the project.
The Prime Minister said: “We remain absolutely committed to HS2. It is a very important infrastructure project for the country. It is important that we increase capacity on this mainline and I believe that HS2 is the right way to do that.
“I’m very keen that we do have a country that works for everyone, and that means every part of the country, and that’s why we’ve introduced the modern industrial strategy, we’ve consulted on that and had very good and positive constructive response from business on that.
“Because we want to ensure that in every part of the country we are identifying the benefits they have, the types of economic development that are best suited. How can we encourage that?
“Infrastructure development is a hugely important part of that, it’s why in the Autumn Statement we were clear that we were putting extra money through to 2020 in infrastructure development.”
Labour yesterday hit back after Mrs May used a visit to Leeds to call on the party’s traditional voters to “lend” her their votes.
Speaking during a visit to Morley, Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer said: “I think that’s the first visit she’s made to Yorkshire, there have been plenty of issues in Yorkshire in the last nine months where she could have come and said ‘I’m very concerned about job losses, I’m concerned about the NHS, tell me your views, what can I do?’
“She didn’t come, she only comes now weeks to go before an election to say effectively ‘give me your vote’.
“She’s also trying to pretend that she’s only responsible for the last nine months. She and her government have been in power for the last seven years and look at what is happening in our health service, look at what is happening to our public services, look at what is happening to jobs and skills.”
Mrs May will campaign in Scotland today and say every vote for her “strengthens the Union”.