Metrolink: Government clarifies Network North plans including Terminal 2 link for Manchester Airport

The government and Transport for Greater Manchester have issued statements about the funding.
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Improved Metrolink connections to Manchester Airport could be part of Network North plans to improve Manchester’s transport network. This is an update made by the Department for Transport following reports which suggested the government planned on extending the Metrolink to Manchester Airport, despite the fact this has been the case since 2014. 

Network North is the transport plan for the North and Midlands. It is to be funded using the money which is now expected to be saved from the axing of the HS2 line between Birmingham and Manchester. 

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Part of the plans for Manchester include the potential extension of the Metrolink to Terminal 2 of Manchester Airport. This would provide increased connectivity to the airport and allow more passengers to have a more direct journey from around the region. 

There was plenty of tongue-in-cheek responses online when the UK Government website suggested the extension of the Metrolink to the Airport. Users were quick to point out that the line has operated for nearly a decade. 

The Department for Transport said: "This commitment is about connections to Terminal 2 but also part of a broader set of investments designed to strengthen Metrolink to the airport and beyond, allowing for further extension in the future."

Transport for Greater Manchester have said that they are looking at how the funding from network North could be used to improve the region’s public transport network as a whole. They also referenced their disappointment" at the cancellation of the HS2 line to Manchester.

The Metrolink tram to Manchester AirportThe Metrolink tram to Manchester Airport
The Metrolink tram to Manchester Airport
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A spokesperson said: “We’re currently looking at the detail of the Network North announcement, which includes an indicative commitment of around £2.4 billion to Greater Manchester for local transport through the City Region Sustainable Transport Fund for the period 2027/28 to 2030/31.

“This funding will support the continued development of Greater Manchester’s Bee Network and we will continue to work with the government, our 10 local authorities and other key stakeholders to discuss how we can best invest the next round of funding in the best interests of our people, places and the taxpayer. 

“Following the disappointing decision to cancel the high speed line between Birmingham and Manchester, we’ll also be working with partners to look at what this announcement means for Northern Powerhouse Rail and our broader strategic ambition to transform rail connectivity across the north of England.”