THE Government has confirmed that the new HS2 rolling stock depot will be located in Leeds, creating up to 125 skilled jobs.

It will play a "crucial role" in enabling 24-hour maintenance of new high-speed trains, which are set to deliver faster journeys for passengers on the East Coast mainline, and will be located at Gateway 45 at Junction 45 of the M1 motorway.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “Constructing this vital depot in Leeds underlines how the benefits of HS2 drive prosperity right across the UK, with Yorkshire playing a crucial role in maintaining the new high speed trains and delivering significantly better journeys for passengers.

“The depot will act as an economic catalyst, creating skilled jobs, boosting the local economy by unlocking regeneration opportunities and driving continued investment.

“This ensures Leeds will not only see immediate benefits when HS2 arrives but will see Yorkshire become a thriving hub for training the engineers that HS2 and future major projects will need.”

Professor Lisa Roberts, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation at the University of Leeds, added: “The location of the HS2 rolling stock depot, combined with the new advanced testing facilities to be built as part of the University’s Institute for High Speed Rail and System Integration are a significant step forward for UK high speed rail capability.

“They position Leeds City Region as a global centre for high speed rail research and development, so we’re working closely with HS2 to ensure our facilities are aligned with its needs and those of industry, so all sides can deliver for the country.”

The location was chosen following a public consultation and the Department for Transport says it will help ensure HS2 has fewer environmental impacts in the region by reducing the distance empty trains travel to and from Leeds.

Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council, welcomed the news.

“It’s now important that through our continued work with HS2 and the Department for Transport that we finalise the proposals for the University of Leeds’ Institute for High Speed Rail, which will be world leading in its field, and underpin the continued success of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Zone," she said.

“Taken together, both of these facilities located at Gateway 45 will make Leeds and the region a global centre for advanced rail and high speed technology, further strengthening the economy.

“Leeds City Council are already working with our partners across Leeds City Region to ensure that people will have the right skills and be ready to take advantage of the skilled jobs and other opportunities these developments will bring.”

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, added: “The rolling stock depot will bring skilled jobs to the Leeds City Region and be a key part of our ambition to be an international centre of excellence in light and high speed rail skills as we seek to maximise the benefits of this investment.

“We want to work with HS2 and the Department for Transport to agree the details of this proposal as swiftly as possible to ensure they are consistent with our wider ambitions for the Leeds City Region Enterprise Zone and to provide certainty for businesses.”