Northern rail: Sign the petition and demand action to fix our railways

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TODAY we issue a rallying cry to the north: join us to demand what government promised us.

As part of our day of action, news titles across the region are starting a petition calling on ministers to come good on their northern powerhouse pledges - by ending the chaos on our rail services, signing off the upgrades they promised us and redressing decades of underfunding to the region.

-> Newspapers across the North unite to halt the rail shambles

Four years ago this month, then-Chancellor George Osborne promised - when unveiling his vision for a northern powerhouse - to ‘join our northern cities together’ with faster, modern transport connections.

Directly addressing the franchise eventually won by Northern Rail a year later, he said: “We’ll want to see not just better services, and more seats at peak times, but also better journeys.”

We agree.

So now that's what we want.

-> LIVE BLOG: Northern Rail chaos investigated as we go out on the trains to force change

Instead of launching a lengthy inquiry that will not report back - with information the government should already know - until the end of the year, transport secretary Chris Grayling needs to end the chaos on our rail network NOW.

We need a fair, fit-for-purpose compensation scheme put in place within days.

And we need the rest of the northern powerhouse that government promised us too: the major transport projects - such as extra platforms at Manchester Piccadilly and Oxford Road - we were pledged, but which are now languishing on Mr Grayling’s desk.

Finally, we want fair funding - not more second-class services, while London eyes up its SECOND high-speed CrossRail link.

With one voice, we say to the Prime Minister: You promised us a northern powerhouse.

It’s time you delivered it.

Sign our petition here: https://www.change.org/p/prime-minister-end-the-northern-rail-nightmare-give-us-the-powerhouse-you-promised