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One Cheshire: County comes together this Cheshire Day to support Crewe’s bid for Great British Railways HQ

Cheshire East 3/30/2022 12:00:00 AM

Now is the time for the wider community to jump on board

To mark Cheshire Day today (30 March), the county has rallied behind Crewe as it bids to become the home of Great British Railways (GBR). 

Crewe set out its bid to become the home of GBR earlier this month. 

While residents and businesses in the town wait expectantly for the shortlist, winning the bid would bring exponential benefits for the whole county, including levelling up opportunities, a positive impact on the economy and helping Crewe’s rail sector to further thrive. 

Crewe offers unique opportunities in both its heritage potential, its prime location and unrivalled connectivity.

The town, which has been linked with the railway for generations, has the established infrastructure in place to become the heart and home of the British railways. 

And now is the time for the wider community to jump on board to support Crewe in its bid to become the home of GBR and back its campaign: Crewe – At The Heart Of Rail #HeartOfRail. 

Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said:

“It has been fantastic to see the outpouring of support received for Crewe’s GBR bid from not only those locally, but from the wider county, region and beyond.

“Today serves as a great opportunity to celebrate that unity and the strength behind Crewe’s bid, and to recognise all that this important Cheshire town – one of the most connected in the UK – has to offer as the future home of Great British Railways.”

Councillor Craig Browne, deputy leader of Cheshire East Council, added: “There are so many reasons why Crewe is the perfect home for GBR’s headquarters – not least its strategic location at the heart of Britain’s rail network, its skilled workforce and its strong local rail industry.

“What better day than Cheshire Day to celebrate the town’s unique offer and to join together to back Crewe’s bid.”

Earlier this month, Warrington Borough Council wrote to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps to outline its support for Crewe’s bid.

Steve Broomhead, Chief Executive and Cllr Hans Mundry, Cabinet Member for Highways, Transportation and Public Realm at Warrington Council, said: “Crewe and the wider Cheshire and Warrington sub-region can offer Great British Railways unrivalled connectivity, access to the highest skilled workforce in the North, excellent value for money in terms of land and property and a quality of life that is hard to beat.

“Selecting Crewe as the Headquarters for Great British Railways would not only act as a catalyst for the regeneration of Crewe but would also be a huge vote of confidence in the wider Cheshire and Warrington sub-region.” 

Cheshire West and Chester Council has also welcomed Crewe’s bid.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, added: “Cheshire West and Chester welcomes Crewe’s bid to accommodate the HQ of Great British Railways.

“It is one of the country’s great railway towns and connects our borough to other parts of the UK. I am sure, if successful, it will become an even more significant location than it is currently, which will benefit the whole county of Cheshire.”

Annette McDonald, Cheshire and Warrington LEP Member for Transport and Chair of the Local Transport Board, also added: “The support for Crewe felt around the county is a testament to our region and our people. Crewe is a town steeped in rail heritage and absolutely primed to become home to the GBR HQ.

“It’s been galvanizing to see the whole county get behind that; we are lucky to be part of such a brilliant community.”

The bid already has the backing of business, rail, education and community leaders in Crewe, plus the support of the MP for Crewe and Nantwich, Dr Kieran Mullan, and record producer and rail enthusiast, Pete Waterman OBE.

To support Crewe’s bid for GBR HQ, people can visit the dedicated website [gbrcrewe.co.uk] when it launches soon, and also share their thoughts on social media, using the hashtag #HeartOfRail. 

Public support will make a wealth of difference to the campaign and will help to re-establish Crewe as a rail powerhouse. 

The current timeline will see an announcement on which areas have been shortlisted for GBR to be made in May, before a non-binding public vote and finally a decision made in summer 2022.