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<b>Friday 29 February: </b> High-speed super trains, pricey plastic and Fergie’s fears

Published on February 29th 2008.

RESEARCH is to be carried out to determine whether a new ultra- high-speed rail route between Manchester and Liverpool will be effective. Funding for the project will be split between the Mersey Partnership and Ultraspeed who are a private firm. Ultraspeed are responsible for the transrapid magnetic levitation technology which allows trains to travel at speeds up to 311mph, which can cut a 1 hour 50 minute journey down to just 39 minutes.

MARKS AND SPENCER in Manchester is backing nationwide plans to start charging 5p for each of their plastic carrier bags. The environmental campaign is set to begin in May and money raise is to go to charity. It will hopefully encourage shoppers to reuse plastic bags which take around 1,000 years to decay.

MANCHESTER is to receive £230m of funding for the housing market. The money, which will be split amongst Manchester, Salford, Rochdale and Oldham, is part of a £1bn national campaign to improve housing conditions. Plans are to refurbish properties as well as demolishing and rebuilding certain areas. The scheme is part of the Government's Housing Market Renewal programme.

SIR ALEX FERGUSON has suggested that Chelsea could be the dark-horses of the Premier League. He told the League Managers' Association website: “The number of points Chelsea are behind Arsenal is not insurmountable. The fact that they have got us and Arsenal at home, and their home record is so good, you would have to think they have still got a big chance in the league.”

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