England's Economic Heartland regularly responds to external reports and consultations, ensuring the region's voice is clearly heard on matters of strategic importance.

On this page you'll find our positions on a wide-range of topics and issues, alongside our own publications and presentations, and other reports of interest to the region.

  • Freight Study Freight Study

    EEH's major study into freight and logistics in and around the Oxford to Cambridge Arc has identified a number of priorities for the region, including improving strategic road access, maximising the use of rail freight, and encouraging investment in greener technology.

    The study, published July 2019, will be a major input into its overarching Transport Strategy.

  • Outline Transport Strategy: Framework for Engagement Outline Transport Strategy: Framework for Engagement

    ​Launched on July 16 2019, the Outline Transport Strategy will see wide-ranging debate on the future of transport in and around the Oxford to Cambridge Arc.

    View the document

    Outline Transport Strategy summary supplement.PDF

    Read the Outline Transport Strategy engagement report.pdf

    Go to the microsite

  • A428 improvements - Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet A428 improvements - Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet

    ​In February 2019 Highways England announced its preferred route for the A428 improvement scheme between the Black Cat roundabout and Caxton Gibbet.

    England's Economic Heartland welcomed this announcement. The scheme is a strategic priority for the Heartland and fundamental to unlocking economic growth in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc and surrounding areas.

    A428 Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet route announcement.pdf

    EEH A428 Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet Consultation Response July 2019.pdf

    For more information go to the Highways England website

  • East West Rail central section East West Rail central section

    In January 2019 the East West Railway Company announced five route options to link Bedford with Cambridge - East West Rail's Central Section(https://eastwestrail.co.uk/haveyoursay).

    East West Rail is a fundamental part of the infrastructure required to enable economic growth in the Heartland, by transforming the travel choices available for individuals and businesses while achieving net gain for our environment.

    The consultation runs until March 11.

    England's Economic Heartland will now look in detail at the relative merits of the route options which have been announced.

    As the Sub-national Transport Body for the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge growth arc and surrounding areas, we look forward to continue engaging with the East West Railway Company as these options are developed further.

    EWR Bedford-Cambridge consultation document.pdf


    EWR route options map.JPG

  • East West Rail eastern section East West Rail eastern section

    In February 2019 the East West Rail Consortium published its Eastern Section Prospectus.

    This makes the strong economic case for direct East West services from Ipswich and Norwich to Oxford - an ambition fully supported by EEH.

    East West Rail Eastern Section Rail Prospectus (3).pdf


  • East West Rail Western Section East West Rail Western Section

    EEH supports Network Rail's Transport and Works Act application to build the Western Section between Oxford and Bedford, and Milton Keynes and Aylesbury.

  • EEH - Call to Action for Autumn Budget 2018 EEH - Call to Action for Autumn Budget 2018

    In September 2018, England's Economic Heartland produced five asks of Government ahead of the Autumn Budget, aimed at accelerating delivery of infrastructure in the growth corridor.

    Five Asks - Budget Call to Action.pdf

  • EEH - Delivering a World Class Heartland EEH - Delivering a World Class Heartland

    ​This publication, published in September 2018, provides information on England's Economic Heartland - who we are and what we do.

    Delivering a World Class Heartland.pdf

  • EEH Utilities study EEH Utilities study

    ​Securing the timely delivery of enabling infrastructure is fundamental to unlocking the region's immense economic potential.

    This is why England's Economic Heartland commissioned a study to identify opportunities to improve the delivery of utility infrastructure in the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge growth corridor.

  • Housing growth - correspondence with Kit Malthouse MP Housing growth - correspondence with Kit Malthouse MP

    ​In July Kit Malthouse MP, Minister of State for Housing, wrote to a number of authorities and orgnisations - including England's Economic Heartland - regarding 'Delivering ambitious housing growth in the Cambridge–Milton Keynes–Oxford Corridor'. You can find his original letter and our response below.

    Kit Malthouse letter.pdf

    EEH response to Kit Malthouse.pdf

  • Letter to Robert Jenrick MP - taskforce and 'grand bargain' - and his response Letter to Robert Jenrick MP - taskforce and 'grand bargain' - and his response

    Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick MP, made a ministerial address at the EEH Conference in September 2018. EEH Chairman Cllr Martin Tett has sent Mr Jenrick a follow-up letter, in which he proposes a ministerial 'taskforce' to develop a 'grand bargain' which could subsequently inform the 2019 Spending Review.

    We have now received Mr Jenrick's response.

    EEH Martin Tett letter to Robert Jenrick September 2018.pdf

     Robert Jenrick response.pdf

  • Major Road Network consultation Major Road Network consultation

    As part of the Transport Investment Strategy, the Government committed to creating a Major Road Network (MRN).

    Its consultation, which runs from December 23, 2017 to March 19, 2018, says Sub-national Transport Bodies (STBs) such as England's Economic Heartland would play an important strategic role in the MRN.

    The consultation asks for views on:

    • how to define the MRN
    • the role that local, regional and national bodies will play in the MRN investment programme
    • which schemes will be eligible for MRN funding

    The Government says a new MRN would help deliver the following objectives:

    • reduce congestion
    • support economic growth and rebalancing
    • support housing delivery
    • support all road users
    • support the Strategic Road Network

    The creation of an MRN will allow for dedicated funding from the National Roads Fund to be used to improve this middle tier of the busiest and most economically important local authority ‘A’ roads.

    The consultation says that STBs would be 'responsible for developing a Regional Evidence Base which would be the basis for the development of a national MRN Investment Programme. Where STBs exist we expect that the Regional Evidence Base would be developed from the existing Statutory Transport Strategies for which STBs are responsible'.

    The four Sub-national Transport Bodies have given an unprecedented joint response to the proposals:

    Four STB's Joint Response to Major Road Network Consultation (PDF 327KB).pdf

    England's Economic Heartland has also provided an indiviual response:

    EEH individual Major Road Network Consultation Response (PDF 528KB).pdf

    Major Road Network Consultation (PDF 8MB).pdf

    DfT indicative Heartland MRN map.jpg

  • NIC Partnering for Prosperity NIC Partnering for Prosperity

    ​In November 2017 the National Infrastructure Commission released its final report on the Oxford-MK-Cambridge growth corridor.

    It said that the arc must be made a national priority.  Its world-class research, innovation and technology can help the UK prosper in a changing global economy.

    However, without urgent action, it said a chronic under-supply of homes could jeopardise growth, limit access to labour and put prosperity at risk.

    The National Infrastructure Commission’s report makes recommendations for securing the Arc’s long-term economic success, delivering improved infrastructure and new homes to create places where people will want to live and work.

    Read England's Economic Heartland's initial reaction to the NIC report.

    NIC Partnering for Prosperity (PDF 4.4MB).pdf

    Government response to partnering for prosperity.pdf


  • Oxford to Cambridge expressway 'missing link' Oxford to Cambridge expressway 'missing link'

    In September 2018, the Government announced that its preferred corridor for the expressway's 'missing link' between Oxfordshire and Milton Keynes would broadly follow the East West Rail link.

    This is a complex and sensitive issue and it is critical that there is now detailed consideration of the route, led by strong evidence and meaningful engagement.

    In January 2019 EEH wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport outlining its concerns over the approach being taken to the 'missing link' of the expressway, while also calling for work on another part of the expressway on the A428 to move ahead without further delay.

    EEH letter to Chris Grayling MP re Oxford to Cambridge Expressway Jan 2019.pdf

    Here are the background documents from Highways England on the 'missing link'  (for more information see https://highwaysengland.co.uk/projects/oxford-to-cambridge-expressway/)

    Corridor Assessment Report.pdf

    Oxford to Cambridge Expressway Corridor overview booklet.pdf

    Strategic Outline Business Case.pdf

    Oxford to Cambridge Expressway Corridor Assessment report.pdf

    Map1 Area for development.pdf

    Map2 Preferred and common corridors.pdf

    Map3 Corridor options.pdf

  • Transport for the South East consultations Transport for the South East consultations
  • Williams Rail Review Williams Rail Review

    ​The Rail Review, led by independent chair Keith Williams, was established to recommend the most appropriate organisational and commercial frameworks to support the delivery of the government’s vision for the railway.

    EEH letter to Williams Review January 2019.pdf

  • Aviation Strategy Aviation Strategy

    The Strategic Transport Forum welcomed the opportunity to submit its initial views in order to help shape the UK’s future aviation strategy.

    The Forum supports the six proposed objectives, with this response highlighting why priorities such as: ‘building a global and connected Britain’; ‘encouraging competitive markets’; ‘supporting growth’ and ‘developing innovation, technology and skills’ are so important to the Heartland.

    Our response includes sections on Luton and Heathrow airports.

  • EEH's strategic road investment priorities EEH's strategic road investment priorities

    ​In September 2017 the Strategic Transport Forum produced a paper setting out our position on strategic road investment priorities for the region.

    See our transport section for more information

  • Great Western Franchise Great Western Franchise

    In November 2017 the DfT asked for views on future services across the Great Western network. The consultation covered a range of issues for both the medium and longer term, including:

    • How services can be improved
    • What a future franchisee should be expected to prioritise

    In its consultation response, EEH said improving capacity between Oxford and Didcot should be a key objective for the next Great Western Rail Franchise.

    The new franchise is also an opportunity to consider how direct rail links can be restored between Swindon and the wider Heartland, alongside improved connectivity with other communities to the west of Didcot.

    Read our news story on the consultation response.

    DfT Great Western Franchise consultation (PDF 1.5MB).pdf

    EEH Great Western Consultation response (PDF).pdf


  • Heathrow expansion Heathrow expansion

    England's Economic Heartland Strategic Alliance welcomed the Government's decision identifying Heathrow Airport as the preferred location for providing additional runway capacity in the London airport system.

    It is important that, in addition to providing support for Heathrow Airport, the final National Policy Statement provides for the continued expansion of Luton Airport as part of the London airport system.

    With Heathrow located on the doorstep of the Heartland area, its good news for improving our access to global markets, helping our businesses remain competitive and remaining an attractive location for inward investment.

    Clearly, we expect that sufficient safety and environmental protection measures will be included within the plans and that delivering improved public transport connectivity to the airport will be integral to the proposals as they emerge.

    In March 2018 England's Economic Heartland responded to a consultation on expansion and airspace changes.

    Below, the Government's short video on benefits of Heathrow expansion

  • Old Oak consultation Old Oak consultation

    ​Old Oak and Park Royal is one of London’s largest Opportunity Areas and one of the largest development sites in the country, with the ambition to deliver a whole new centre and community for west London which includes 25,500 new homes and 65,000 jobs.

    From 2026 HS2, the Elizabeth line and National Rail services are expected to call at a new Old Oak Common station and the area will benefit from excellent east – west rail connections, including to central London and Heathrow Airport.

    The Strategic Transport Forum fully supports the principle of the Old Oak Common regeneration proposal, particularly the transport hub and the opportunities for connectivity/interchange improvements.

    It is essential that the new rail station and interchange facilities at Old Oak Common support connections that improve connectivity along the Northampton to Old Oak Common axis. This axis is of strategic importance to the Heartland if the area is to realise the economic potential identified by the NIC. The Strategic Transport Forum has set out its support for improved rail access to the growth hub at Old Oak Common/Park Royal as set out by the London Mayor in his draft Transport Strategy.

    The strategic case for promoting improved north-south connectivity (in particular along the Northampton – Milton Keynes – Aylesbury – High Wycombe – Old Oak Common corridor) has been set out in the recently published Network Rail Route Strategy for Chilterns and East West Rail. Delivery of East West Rail infrastructure, in combination with the opening of HS2 (providing relief to the current West Coast Main Line), provides the opportunity to improve connectivity along this axis, linking up a number of urban areas that are centres of economic and housing growth.

    Old Oak consultation leaflet (PDF 1.9MB)

    EEH Old Oak Common consultation response (PDF 96KB)

  • Strategic Vision for Rail Strategic Vision for Rail

    ​In November 2017 the DfT published its strategic vision for railways, including plans to end the operational divide between track and train and an evolution of the franchising system.

    The proposals also include commitments to expand the railway network to boost housing and economic growth, and deliver major passenger benefits – including rolling out improved compensation schemes for passengers.

    Connecting people a strategic vision for rail (PDF 3.8MB).pdf

  • Treasury Policy Paper: Helping the CaMkOx corridor reach its potential Treasury Policy Paper: Helping the CaMkOx corridor reach its potential

    ​Alongside the Autumn Budget 2017, and following the National Infrastructure Commission’s recent report, the government published its overarching vision for the Cambridge – Milton Keynes – Oxford corridor to stimulate economic growth in the national interest. It invites stakeholders from across the region to engage over the next 12 months to turn this high-level vision into a strategy that is capable of being delivered through an integrated programme of infrastructure investments, housing and business growth.

    The policy paper also states that the government will commission England’s Economic Heartland to study how communities not on the Oxford to Cambridge expressway itself can still benefit from it.

    We are delighted to be asked to take forward this work, which would form part of our over-arching Transport Strategy. It is a vote of confidence in the Strategic Alliance.

    See our initial Budget response in full

    Helping the CaMkOx corridor reach its potential (PDF 300KB).pdf


  • West Northamptonshire Strategic Plan West Northamptonshire Strategic Plan

    The local planning authorities in West Northamptonshire, i.e. Daventry District, Northampton Borough and South Northamptonshire Councils with support from Northamptonshire County Council, agreed to prepare a new Strategic Plan for the area.

    The West Northamptonshire Strategic Plan (WNSP) will set out a spatial vision for the future of the area extended up to 2050.

    An issues consultation was held autumn 2019. Read our response below:

    WNSP Issues Consultation 7th October 2019.pdf


  • CLG report - land value capture CLG report - land value capture

    The Communities and Local Government Committee (CLG) Committee examined the effectiveness of current land value capture methods and the need for new ways of capturing any uplift in the value of land associated with the granting of planning permission or nearby infrastructure improvements and other factors. Their report was released in September 2018.

    Land Value Capture.pdf

  • East Midlands Rail Franchise East Midlands Rail Franchise

    The Strategic Transport Forum responded robustly to plans to reduce rail services in Bedford, Luton and Wellingborough,  which are at odds with the region being a focus for long term growth.

    Our response said the proposals will have an 'unacceptable impact on passengers using services in the Heartland' and will 'significantly impact' on journeys from towns within the region to destinations north of Wellingborough by introducing a requirement to change at Kettering.

    This is 'inconsistent with the role of Bedford as a hub for interchange both with Thameslink services and in future, services on East West Rail. Passengers from either service intending to travel northwards on the Midland Main Line would be required to change twice – at Bedford and Kettering – in quick succession'.

    The Transport Forum also requested a minimum of four trains per hour calling at Luton Airport Parkway providing services to both London, as well as Bedford and key stations to the north.

    In March 2018, England's Economic Heartland chairman Cllr Martin Tett wrote to Chris Grayling calling the timetable changes 'perverse' and inviting the Secretary of State to meet with him in person to discuss how the issue be addressed.

    Read our news release on the consultation



  • EEH's strategic rail investment priorities EEH's strategic rail investment priorities

    This paper, published in December 2017, confirms our strategic rail priorities as:

    • Delivery of East West Rail in full
    • Addressing capacity constraints on the Didcot – Oxford corridor (which would need to be considered alongside issues associated with the parallel strategic road corridor);
    • Addressing capacity constraints on the ‘Cambridge corridor
    • Realising the opportunities to improve north-south connectivity on the Northampton – Milton Keynes – Bletchley – Aylesbury – High Wycombe – Old Oak Common/Park Royal corridor.

    EEH Strategic Rail Investment Priorities - Dec 2017 (PDF 255KB).pdf

  • Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review

    ​The Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review was announced in the Government’s Industrial Strategy, with the aim of examining the market and policy conditions that will enable greater investment in future telecoms infrastructure at pace.

    Published in summer 2018, the review addresses key questions that could affect the evolution of the UK’s digital infrastructure such as the convergence between fixed and mobile technologies, and the transition from copper to full fibre networks.


  • Highways UK Conference 2017 presentations Highways UK Conference 2017 presentations

    ​England's Economic Heartland exhibited at the Highways UK Conference 2017, held at the NEC from November 8 to 9. We also gave a number of presentations. You'll find the slides here, and links to the accompanying videos.

    1. Cllr Martin Tett, Chairman of England's Economic Heartland, speaking at 'Beyond the SRN, progress towards better regional and local networks'.

    Martin Tett presentation Highways UK, 8 November 2017 (PDF 1MB)

    Watch the recording

    2. England's Economic Heartland update briefing. This includes Director Martin Tugwell on 'Realising our economic potential'; Innovation lead officer James Golding-Graham on 'Data and the future of transport network innovation'; and Delivery Partner Liaison Steve Kent on 'Delivering the Heartland's vision: a private sector perspective'.

    Strategic Alliance Update Briefing Highways UK, 9 November (PDF 1.2MB)

    Watch the recording

    3. Director Martin Tugwell's presentation as part of the 'Multi modal travel panel'.

    Martin Tugwell multi modal travel panel transportation presentation Highways UK, 8 November (PDF 909KB)

    Watch the recording

  • Mayor of London's Transport Strategy Mayor of London's Transport Strategy

    In summer 2017 the Mayor of London released his draft Transport Strategy.

    Our response emphasised that London's strategic infrastructure requirements must be balanced with that of the wider south-east, which is experiencing housing pressures on a similar scale to the capital and whose economy will continue to significantly contribute to UK Plc with the right investment.

    However, the Heartland's strategic needs are in many cases also of strategic importance to London, for example, improving east-west connectivity will give people an alternative to travelling into London, and free up capacity.

    We stressed that a collaborative approach on matters of strategic significance is essential and in the best interests of transport users and businesses across the greater South East.

    The Forum welcomed the identification of infrastructure corridors such as that between Oxford and Cambridge, and reference to the need for longer trains to serve Luton Airport as part of the Thameslink programme, and for the provision of a new automated people mover to better connect Luton Airport with the rail network.

    However, the Forum warned against any proposal that would result in further devolution of responsibility to the Mayor for local rail services operating between the Heartland and the capital.

    It also wants more details on the practical implications of the suggestion that regional and national public transport schemes should be integrated into London's public transport system.

    Read our news release on the consultation



  • Northampton Gateway Freight Interchange submission to planning inspectorate Northampton Gateway Freight Interchange submission to planning inspectorate
  • Planning for Growth Planning for Growth

    ​Our position statement, published in October 2016, sets out the Strategic Transport Forum's vision for the Heartland, why it is so important for the UK economy, and where we want to see investment.

  • Strategic Road Network Initial Report Strategic Road Network Initial Report

    ​In December 2017 Highways England published and consulted on its Strategic Road Network (SRN) Initial Report.

    The initial report is the first step in the process for the Department of Transport setting its second Road Investment Strategy (RIS2) for the period from 2020 to 2025.

    It sets out:

    • Highways England’s assessment of the current state of the SRN
    • its potential future needs
    • their proposed priorities for RIS2

    In its consultation response, EEH said:

    • RIS2 should include funding to enable commencement of works for RIS1 projects (2015-2020) - expressway, Black Cat-Caxton Gibbet and A1(M) improvements.
    • It supports study of potential benefits of upgrading entire A1 to motorway standard, and calls for a new strategic study for RIS2 looking at longer-term requirements of the Major Road Network supporting the Cambridge economy.
    • Improved east-west connectivity is crucial and should not be limited to a single corridor. EEH supports proposals to improve connectivity from A505 to A1(M) by extending the A5-M1 and M1-A6 routes across the A505.
    • Schemes in the A404 corridor should be progressed during the later stages of RIS1 and through RIS2.
    • Other issues of strategic significance, worthy of a study, include improvements to junctions on the M1, M11 and M40 corridors.

     EEH said it desires a continued involvement in shaping the SRN and Major Road Network (MRN) in and around the Heartland. We noted that the consultation states Sub-national Transport Bodies will be statutory partners in both the road and rail investment process and this was welcomed.

    The consultation report also correctly identified the role the Sub-national Transport Bodies have in supporting growth, and that the realisation of the economic potential of the Heartland is a priority for the UK.

    The SRN strategy in RIS2 and beyond must take account of both user and business needs, safety, journey time reliability, and a feeling of control are important to users of the SRN. Business requirements and wider economic growth will need to be facilitated by both ongoing operation, maintenance, and renewal of existing infrastrure, and delivery of truly transformational schemes which will change how and where we travel, and the pattern of economic growth.

    It must be recognised that the SRN does not operate in isolation, and therefore emerging proposals for the MRN and understanding of first mile/ last mile requirements should be factored into thinking. Longer term technological advances will change the way we think about travel, and therefore planning in RIS2 must be resilient and consider future RIS periods.

    Highways England Strategic Road Network Initial Report December 2017 (PDF 15MB).pdf

    Strategic Road Network Initial Report EEH consultation response (PDF 338KB).pdf


  • Transport appraisal and modelling consultation Transport appraisal and modelling consultation

    In its response to the DfT's consultation on its transport appraisal and modelling strategy, England's Economic Heartland said:

    • Existing WebTAG appraisal guidance must do more to capture cross-sector benefits

    • Undue weight is afforded to journey-time savings and greater emphasis should be given to non-monetised elements

    • A fundamental review of addressing future demand needs to be taken to ensure transport planners, scheme promoters, sponsors and decision makers are aiming for the same strategic vision and schemes can be aligned accordingly

    • There is an urgent need to consider how better to reflect the role of transport investment as an ‘enabler’ of economic connectivity, as currently shemes tend to be appraised in isolation

    • There is a genuine case for greater devolution and autonomy in transport scheme appraisal to enable implementation of regionally led, cross-sector visions

    • Generating benefits from the appraisal process should consider less prescriptive techniques where possible, which in turn are less labour and time intensive

    • The principle of appraisal should be aimed at plausible futures, and shaping them, rather than trying to get exact precision on the most likely vision of the future.

    EEH DfT WebTAG consultation response.pdf


  • Transport Investment Strategy Transport Investment Strategy

    ​England's Economic Heartland Strategic Alliance welcomed the Government's Transport Investment Strategy, published in July 2017.

    The Alliance's Strategic Transport Forum had previously welcomed the recommendation of the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund to identify a Major Road Network (MRN).

    The strategy sets out plans to give 'special recognition' to the 'busiest and most economically important local authority A roads' by creating an MRN.

    A proportion of the vehicle excise duty-funded National Roads Fund will be allocated for investment in the MRN and there will be a 'key role for Sub-national Transport Bodies in its management at a regional level.

    The report says Sub-national Transport Bodies will bring about 'fundamental change' and will be given 'unprecedented access' to Government decision-making on national investment priorities.

  • Mobility Strategy for Milton Keynes Mobility Strategy for Milton Keynes
  • A Major Road Network for England: Rees Jeffreys report A Major Road Network for England: Rees Jeffreys report

    An independent study for the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund identified 3,800 miles of council-controlled 'A' roads in England that deserve special recognition because of their importance to the economic wellbeing of regions and the country as a whole.  

    The report - A Major Road Network for England - said there was no need to transfer control of these additional 'A' roads to Highways England.

    But it argued that, while these roads remain under local authority management, they need long-term planning and funding commitments comparable to those now in place for the Strategic Road Network. This will help ensure they become fit for purpose, alongside the SRN.   

    The Government accepted the report's recommendation and said Sub-national Transport Bodies (which EEH is committed to becoming) will have a key role in the new MRN's management.

    The Strategic Transport Forum will identify an MRN for the region as part of its work on the Transport Strategy, using the MRN identified in the Rees Jeffreys report as the foundation for this work.

  • National Infrastructure Commission interim report National Infrastructure Commission interim report

    The Strategic Alliance welcomed the National Infrastructure Commission's interim report on the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge growth corridor, which recognised the huge potential of the Heartland area.

    The Commission said that there is a need for a step change in strategic leadership - and the Strategic Alliance was established in response to public and business sector leaders recognising this need.

    The report recognises the Strategic Alliance's work to date on strategic transport and there is clear future commitment to look at the broader infrastructure agenda.

    We agree with the NIC that this is a 'once in a generation' opportunity to deliver a 'multi-modal transport spine' across the Heartland area.

  • Chilterns Route Study Chilterns Route Study

    ​England's Economic Heartland Strategic Alliance welcomed the publication of Network Rail's West Midlands and Chilterns Route Study in summer 2017, which recommended connecting the Chiltern mainline to Old Oak Common.

    The study sets out how demand on the Chiltern line has increased in the last decade, and will grow further with major housing development in Aylesbury, Bicester and Princes Risborough. However, the Chiltern Line's London terminus at Marylebone is approaching its maximum capacity.

    The study therefore recommends connecting the Chiltern mainline to Old Oak Common, which when it opens in 2026 will be one of London's major transport hubs and an interchange for the Heathrow Express, Crossrail, HS2 and the Great Western mainline.

    This would result in up to four additional trains per hour into London while offering passengers greater choice when travelling into the capital.

    The study was produced in partnership with England's Economic Heartland. For many years the Alliance partners have promoted East West Rail as a critical piece of strategic infrastructure to enable economic growth. Connecting the Chiltern mainline to Old Oak Common further strengthens the strategic importance of the scheme, which will enable north-south services from Milton Keynes to Aylesbury and onto London via Princes Risborough.



  • A1 East of England strategic study A1 East of England strategic study

    The findings of the Department for Transport’s A1 East of England strategic study.

  • M25 South-West Quadrant strategic study M25 South-West Quadrant strategic study

    The findings of the Department for Transport’s M25 south-west quadrant strategic study.

  • Smart power Smart power

    The Strategic Alliance welcomed Ofgem's Upgrading Our Energy System Plan, published in summer 2017, as a step forward in laying the foundations for innovation and regulatory change across the energy industry. We will be exploring the opportunities for change as presented in this report and how it can be applied across the Heartland area. 

    The Plan discusses the development of a smart, flexible energy system that will save costs for industry providers and consumers. These changes could encourage innovative new businesses, putting the UK at the forefront of exporting new smart energy technologies to the rest of the world. 

    This is particularly good news for England's Economic Heartland, as we seek to get a full picture of key issues that local authorities and the business community is facing in terms of securing timely and adequate utilities infrastructure to meet the existing and future growth agenda.

  • Life Sciences Industrial Strategy Life Sciences Industrial Strategy

    ​The report, written by Life Science's Champion Professor Sir John Bell, provides recommendations to government on the long term success of the life sciences sector. It recommends infrastructure to support life sciences clusters, including East West Rail.

  • Strategic Transport Forum papers Strategic Transport Forum papers

    ​The Strategic Transport Forum is held in public and we publish all its papers online. They contain a wealth of information on our work.

    Forum papers