Plans to bring a tram system to Sutton town centre received a boost after Sutton and Merton councils agreed to support an extension of the Croydon Tramlink.

Sutton Council leader councillor Sean Brennan and his Merton counterpart, councillor Stephen Alambritis, signed an agreement at Mitcham Junction last week to support the extension of the existing Croydon to Wimbledon line to serve Sutton town centre via Rosehill.

It is hoped the trams would give businesses and shops a boost in trade and cut the amount of traffic on the roads.

Both boroughs must now lobby jointly to secure funding from Transport for London (TfL) and central Government.

Councillor Brennan said: "The signing of this agreement is a big step forward towards our ambition of bringing trams back to Sutton town centre, and we are pleased to be joining forces with our neighbours in Merton.

"Extending the network would significantly improve access to Sutton town centre and St Helier Hospital, and open up employment opportunities at Willow Lane for residents of the St Helier estate.

"We hope this proposal will be viewed positively by TfL and the mayor."

Your Local Guardian: A tram in Trinity Square, Sutton

The route would first go via Mitcham Junction, Willow Walk, and St Helier Hospital with the second going through Morden (London Road), Morden town centre and Rosehill.

A third option to extend the route north to Mitcham town centre and Tooting is also included as part of the longer term plan.

While there is no funding at present both Sutton and Merton councils are hopeful that the line will be considered favourably when funding becomes available.

Anthea Lashley-Small, director Sutton Chamber of Commerce, said: "Sutton Chamber welcomes the move by Councillors Sean Brennan and Stephen Alambritis, of Sutton and Merton respectively who have joined forces to lobby for the tramline to be extended into Sutton.

"£3 million has recently been spent upgrading the town centre so we are definitely open for business. Sutton is a one of the safest boroughs to live and work and a tram system serving Sutton and St Helier would certainly encourage more business growth.

"Sutton Chamber certainly backs this move."