MP MICHAEL Dugher has backed the plans for a second high-speed rail line because of the potential economic benefits the project could bring to South Yorkshire.

He's also said he will always put the concerns of Barnsley residents first in seeking reassurances from the Department for Transport regarding the proposed route through Barnsley.

The maps released show that the proposed line will pass through a substantial part of Mr Dugher’s constituency of Barnsley East – going through Hoyland Common, cutting across Sheffield Rd, passing around Wombwell Wood, coming down near the Tesco store at Stairfoot, and going through the upper part of Cudworth before heading out past Royston.

"I support the HS2 project in principle because of the huge potential economic benefits it could bring to South Yorkshire and the wider region,'' he said.

"However, I will always put Barnsley residents first and there are still aspects of the route that need clarifying. I will be scrutinising the proposals carefully and seeking assurances from the Department for Transport on the precise nature of the route through Barnsley.''