Politicians to gather at major rail event in Derby

Date posted: June 23, 2023

HS2 and Rail Minister, Huw Merriman, will be joined by East Midlands politicians and leaders at an event to discuss rail plans for the region. Full Speed Ahead: bringing high speed-rail to the East Midlands, hosted by Midlands Connect and Transport for East Midlands will focus the importance of the Integrated Rail Plan and HS2 for the region.

Where: The Stuart Hotel, Derby DE1 2QR

When: Monday 3rd July, 9:30-14:00

Contact: paulbutters@midlandsconnect.uk or 07827 747436


10:00 – 10:15 | Speech – opening comments

Sir John Peace (Chair of Midlands Connect)

10:15 – 10:30 | Keynote speech

Huw Merriman MP (HS2 & Rail Minister, DfT)

10:30– 11:15 | Panel – Unlocking the potential of the East Midlands: the impact of the IRP


  • Sir Peter Soulsby (Mayor for Leicester and Chair of Transport for the East Midlands)
  • Chris Hobson (Director of Policy & Insight, East Midlands Chamber)
  • Cllr Tricia Gilby (Leader of Chesterfield Borough Council)
  • Cllr Carmel Swan (Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Transport & Sustainability at Derby City Council
  • Chair: Andrew Pritchard (Director of Policy & Infrastructure, East Midlands Councils)

11:15– 11:30 | Coffee break

11:30 – 12:15 | Panel: High Speed Rail in the East Midlands


  • Alexandra Batey (Phase 2b Development Director for HS2)
  • Rupert Brennan Brown (Rail Forum Board Director & Stakeholder Engagement Lead)
  • Ken Harrison (Programme Director at East Midlands Development Corporation)
  • Chair: Maria Machancoses (CEO of Midlands Connect)

12:15 – 13:00 | Panel – The IRP: a political perspective


  • Pauline Latham (MP for Mid Derbyshire)
  • Toby Perkins (MP for Chesterfield)
  • Amanda Solloway (MP for Derby North)
  • Cllr Ben Bradley (MP for Mansfield)

13:00 – 13:15 | Speech – closing remarks

Maria Machancoses (CEO of Midlands Connect)


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