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Transport for the North Annual Conference 2021: Northern leaders to discuss inclusivity, a Northern investment pipeline, and transport funding

Transport for the North’s Annual Conference 2021 takes place today (September 20) with the North’s mayors, council and business leaders getting together to discuss key issues on transport inclusivity and funding, as well as the levelling up agenda.

The third annual event, in partnership with The Northern Agenda, takes place on Monday at the Queens Hotel, Leeds, with sessions also being streamed live in full online.

The afternoon sessions will focus on how transport can help to make the North more inclusive; the importance of getting the right schemes in the right places at the right time; and how to finance Northern transport schemes.


For more details and to register for the livestream, visit:

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said: “Major decisions are looming which will have a massive bearing on life in the North of England for the rest of this century. At such a crucial moment, it is important that the North comes together as one and makes the case for the investment needed to build an integrated, affordable, 21st century public transport system.

“This conference gives us the chance to do just that and get the voice of the North heard clearly in Whitehall. The country will not be levelled up until people here can benefit from public transport of the same quality, at the same cost, as London. They have had to put up with over-priced, second-class services for far too long and now deserve to see real change.”

Transport for the North Chief Executive Martin Tugwell said: “We’re delighted to be holding Transport for the North’s third annual conference, setting out how our ambitious vision to boost opportunities for our region’s people and businesses can be brought to life through investment in our transport networks.

“It’s so exciting to be bringing local political and business leaders together in one room, alongside government representatives and industry experts, to discuss how we can work together under the banner of levelling up.

“The panel sessions will showcase the need for change and demonstrate the practical, and innovative, plans and projects that we have set out to transform connectivity and overcome the decades of underinvestment that the North has dealt with. Our speakers bring to the conversation a wealth of insight, experience and data, which underpin our collaborative, strategic goals and have informed the many schemes and initiatives we now need to get on and deliver with Government backing.

“They’ll be looking at everything from post-pandemic economic recovery and encouraging people to return to public transport, to decarbonising our transport network and our future travel needs.”

Afternoon schedule for the Transport for the North Annual Conference

13:30 – 14:30 Breakout sessions

How can transport help to make the North more inclusive?

  • TfN Chief Executive, Martin Tugwell
  • Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham
  • Chief Economist at the Institute for Government, Gemma Tetlow
  • Associate Professor at De Montfort University, Arianna Giovannini

The right schemes, in the right place, at the right time – getting the North’s pipeline rolling

  • Chaired by the Editor of the Star, Nancy Fielder
  • TfN Major Roads Director, Peter Molyneux
  • Chief Executive of East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Miranda Barker
  • Programme Director for the Great British Railways Transition Team, Elaine Seagriff

Funding the transport projects we need – how we can finance our Northern transport networks

  • Chaired by Editor of the Yorkshire Evening Post, Laura Collins
  • Lancashire County Councillor, Charles Edwards
  • TfN Finance Director, Iain Craven
  • NP11 Chair, Sir Roger Marsh
  • Lancashire County Council Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, Cllr Charles Edwards
  • North West Director at Institution of Civil Engineers, Emma Antrobus

14.45- 15:45 Afternoon Plenary

  • Special guest TBA
  • Chaired by TfN Chief Executive, Martin Tugwell
  • Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham
  • TfN Acting Chair and Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, Councillor Louise Gittins

Photo credit: Transport for the North

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