Bury North MP James Daly has welcomed government plans to invest in Bury’s buses – as his Labour counterpart dismisses the scheme as ‘smoke and mirrors.’

The borough’s MPs, Conservative James Daly and for Bury South representative Christian Wakeford, have reacted to government plans to invest £16 million in 2024-2-25 to improve Greater Manchester’s buses following the scrapping of HS2.

The government announced Greater Manchester would receive a share of the cash as part of it’s Network North Plan which it says will be spent on improving public transport.

The investment comes from money which would have been spent on HS2, who northern leg was scrapped by the government earlier this month.

It adds that the funds will primarily used to improve the region's bus services by ‘helping local authorities to provide more regular and reliable services or cheaper fares delivered through fare initiatives and ticket price caps.

As part of Network North, the government say that a £2 bus fare cap, which is already in place across Greater Manchester, will be extended across the country next week until December 2024.

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Bury North MP James Daly said: “Taking the bus is by far the most popular form of public transport here in Bury, which is why the Government is right to make the long-term decision to reinvest every penny of savings from HS2 into local transport.

“The over £16 million of funding for Greater Manchester will be transformational for people across Bury, improving services and making them cheaper and more reliable.

“Today’s announcement is only possible due to the long-term decision taken to redirect every penny of savings from HS2 in transport projects across the country – benefitting more people in more places, more quickly.”

However, Bury South MP for Labour, Christian Wakeford criticised the plans, saying those in the North are treated as ‘second class citizens’ by the government.

He also hit out at a suggestion that the Network North Plan could be used to extend the Metrolink to Manchester Airport, a line which was completed in 2014.

The plan has since been corrected to clarify terminal two of the airport specifically.

Christian Wakeford said: “Typical smoke and mirrors from the PM and from the Member from Bury North. Treated like second class citizens and expected to be grateful for a tram line being finished that was completed years ago and bus funding that isn’t due until after the next election.

“We are getting 0.4 per cent of HS2 funding which tells you all you need to know; this government doesn't care about Bury or the wider North West."