....the Integrated Rail Plan ("IRP) previously expected at platforms in the Midlands and the North in July will be delayed until October. 

Not the news anyone in the rail industry wanted to see today. Setting all jokes aside concerning trains and delays, the IRP is a hugely important document for all members of the rail industry and for those passengers who live and work in the Midlands and the North (yours truly being one of them!).

The expectation and the hope is that the IRP will provide an update and detail on the government’s plans for projects such as HS2, Northern Powerhouse Rail and the Midlands Rail Hub. Whilst there are whispers about what can be expected and what might be scrapped, the further delay in publishing this document, especially after the delay linked to publication of the Williams-Shapps review (released in May after a significant delay) only serves to provide further uncertainty to the sector and in particular to the supply chain who rely on a level of visibility when looking a future work streams. 

The hope of course is that the delay is due to Treasury having unearthed an unopened piggy bank to enable all Projects that the regions are calling for to progress. Time will tell...let's just hope that the time isn't beyond October 2021!