Emily Thornberry (standing) Rebecca Long-Bailey (right) and Lisa Nandy (left)

Nottingham’s tram could be connected to Derby if Emily Thornberry becomes Prime Minister.

The MP raised the issue at an unofficial Labour leadership hustings held on Sunday (26 January) at Nottingham Trent University.

She was joined by fellow candidates; Rebecca Long-Bailey and Lisa Nandy, however Keir Starmer was unable to attend due to family illness.

Mrs Thornberry, shadow foreign secretary, commented on Nottingham’s tram services during the event. She said: “We have to make sure we are investing in other things. You have a fantastic tram service here in Nottingham, £4 to be able to travel around all day in Nottingham.”

She added: “It is brilliant but it needs to be connected up with Derby. What happened to the plans in relation to that? We should be connecting it to other towns and cities around you…there’s nothing wrong with investing in infrastructure we have to do more of it.”

This was in response to an audience member’s question of whether they would scrap HS2 and how the candidates would ensure better train connections for the North and the Midlands.

Lisa Nandy, MP for Wigan, said: “By not making the case for HS2 we are letting the Tories off the hook.

“They have made an absolute mess of the project and now we have Boris Johnson running around shouting about having some kind of special conference so that someone else can make this decision for him.”

Meanwhile Rebecca Long-Bailey, shadow business secretary, suggested changes to the high speed project.

“What we need to see was HS2 being built from Scotland down not London up, and we also need to see in the East and West links provided as well.”

The event was hosted by Open Labour, an activist group within the Labour Party in connection with the Electoral Reform Society, a political pressure group focused on electoral reform.

Before the leadership panel, a deputy leadership panel was held with candidates Angela Rayner, Dawn Butler, Richard Burgeon, Ian Murray and Dr Rosenna Allin-Khan.

Both panels were chaired by journalist Rachel Shabi.