MIKE Amesbury has again pressed the case for two trains an hour through Northwich, while branding the Northern Powerhouse a 'damp squib'.

In a debate on HS2 in the Commons, Weaver Vale MP Mike also slammed the high speed rail project's spiralling costs.

He said: “In 2017, Northern should have been delivering two trains an hour from Northwich to Manchester on the Mid Cheshire Line – it is still not doing that. When we hear of HS2’s costs spiralling from £57 billion up to even £106 billion, people look at the Northern Powerhouse slogan as a real damp squib."

Mike also pressed the need for the Northern Powerhouse Rail project – known as HS3 – which would see investment into rail services across the north.

With Crossrail costs in London up by £2.8bn to £17.6bn and its opening delayed from 2018 to 2021, Mike said links between northern towns and cities were lacking.

He said: “Scepticism is shared by many of my constituents, especially given the track record of non-delivery for the north. If we genuinely want to power up the north, major infrastructure projects are essential, but we need that Crossrail for the north.

"I am sick and tired of hearing about Crossrail for the south, and it is great to see some of the southern colleagues on the Government benches now seemingly speaking up for some constituents in the north as well as those in the south—if only they had done that in the past. So I want assurances that this will be transparent and that investment will go into the north.”