Prime minister gives green light to £16bn scheme if businesses also give funding

Gordon Brown has signalled his support for the £16bn Crossrail project. He did however add that businesses would have to make a “significant contribution”.

Gordon Brown

The prime minister told an audience at Canary Wharf in London’s Docklands that the government will make cash available in this month’s Comprehensive Spending Review.

He said: “I will ensure this work is stepped up but as you know the only financing solution that will work will require all parties, public and private, contributing significantly.”

Shadow chancellor George Osborne also gave his backing to Crossrail at the Conservative Party conference.

The rail link proposed in the mid 1980s will connect Maidenhead to Essex.