Possible Future HS3 Link

Chancellor George Osborne is expected to outline a new plan for a HS3 line between Manchester and Leeds today.

Osborne is set to make the announcement in Manchester this morning, alongside David Cameron.

The new connection is expected to be based on the current rail route between the two cities, yet with new tunnels and infrastructure.

Mr Osborne is to call for northern cities to band together to become a new 'powerhouse' for the British economy.

In his speech, the Chancellor says: "There is a hard truth we need to address. The cities of the north are individually strong, but collectively not strong enough.

"The whole is less than the sum of its parts. So the powerhouse of London dominates more and more. That's not healthy for our economy. It's not good for our country.

"We need a Northern powerhouse too. Not one city, but a collection of northern cities - sufficiently close to each other that combined they can take on the world. Able to provide jobs and opportunities and security to the many, many people who live here, and for whom this is all about."

Former deputy Prime Minister Lord Heseltine agrees: "Let us now use economic recovery to spread wealth to every corner of our country. Nowhere is better placed to lead the rebalancing of the UK than the north.

"The combined might of great cities like Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds, and the combined talent of the people who live there, must have the chance to lead this vital part of our country as earlier generations so proudly did in earlier times of British excellence."

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