LEIGH’s MP has labelled the regional rail network “shambolic” and blamed the Government’s lack of leadership on the matter.

Jo Platt believes the transport crisis, which has led to strikes and the introduction of temporary timetables from Northern Rail, should have been handled more firmly.

She has also raised the issue of Leigh being disconnected from the rail network.

Ms Platt said: “The chaos we have seen across our regional rain network has been shambolic.

“There has been no intervention or leadership from the transport secretary which is characteristic of this Government that treats the North with such little regard.

“If this fiasco was occurring in London or the South-East, I am sure the response would have been far quicker and far more efficient.

“It is a sad reality that too many towns in our region, including in Leigh, are left disconnected from the rail network.

“Constituents who do commute too often find their trains delayed or cancelled.

“Quite simply our transport infrastructure is unable to cope with the pressure.

“The Government must intervene without delay to sort this mess out.

“But for our region to thrive in the long-term we also desperately need a Government that will give the resources, funding and powers that Greater Manchester deserves.”

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling argues that he is doing all he can to address the network issues across the UK.

He said: “Northern and GTR passengers are encountering totally unacceptable service levels and it is my priority this is put right as soon as possible and passengers are compensated for the disruption.

“An independent inquiry will now be carried out to determine how this went so badly wrong and to make sure this does not happen again.

“I will also investigate whether GTR and Northern have breached their contracts and won’t hesitate to take tough action against either if they are found negligent.”

The Department for Transport (DfT) also added that the Government is committed to improving rail travel and is “investing in the biggest modernisation of the rail network since Victorian times”.

In the North, the Government plans to deliver new trains including more than 500 new carriages, room for 40,000 extra passengers and more than 2,000 extra services a week.