Paralympian Richard Whitehead helped to launch the new faster East Midlands to London trains this morning.
Trains will run up to eight minutes faster following £70m of investment and upgrades to 160 miles of track.
The Paralympic gold-medallist believes the quicker train journeys will improve community links and bring more business to the East Midlands.
The Paralympian, Richard Whitehead, was at the launch of new, faster train services between Nottingham/Derby and London.
Almost 160 miles of track have been upgraded after a £70m investment programme and the average journey time will be reduced by five minutes.
Faster train journeys are being launched at Nottingham station this morning.
Almost 160 miles of track have been upgraded.
The average journey time will be reduced by five minutes.
Campaign for Better Transport thinks HS2 will only take money out of the region and widen the North-South divide.
David Thornhill told ITV News Central that 'HS2 will not help the region'.
The HS2 high-speed rail project has an estimated £3.3 billion funding gap which the Government has yet to decide how to fill, a report from a Whitehall spending watchdog said today.
It was not clear how HS2 - which runs through Tory heartlands and is bitterly opposed by some - would deliver and rebalance economic growth, the report by the National Audit Office (NAO) added.
The timetable for planning phase one of the project - from London to Birmingham with work due to start in 2016/17 - was "challenging", the NAO said.
This challenging timetable "makes delivering this work difficult and increases the risk that the programme will have a weak foundation for securing and demonstrating success in the future", the report said.
The controversial high speed rail has been severely criticised in a report by the National Audit Office.Read the full story ›
Claire Lomas is training today for her big challenge at the end of April when she hand cycles from Nottingham to London. That is the equivalent of a marathon a day over three weeks.
Claire was paralysed from the waist down when she was injured in a horse riding accident. Last year she became the first person to complete the London Marathon using a robotic walking suit in a time of 17 days.
This year Claire will be cycling down to London with 60 other riders in a specially designed wheelchair.
The government has projected the following journey times when the HS2 high speed rail network is completed:
- Manchester to Birmingham - 41m (roughly half of current journey time)
- Manchester to London - 1h 8m (roughly half of current journey time)
- Leeds to Birmingham - 57m (down from 1h 58m)
- Leeds to London - 1hr 22m (down from 2h 12m)
Less than an hour before Pete Barnes was killed in a helicopter crash, another pilot who was aware of his journey sent him a message, saying: "Give me a call as I have checked the weather and freezing fog around at the moment."
Mr Barnes then called the pilot to tell him the weather at Redhill, where he was departing from, was all clear. He said he knew there was fog at Elstree but was going to fly overhead to see for himself.
Pete Barnes was due to collect a client and was warned by them too about the weather conditions. He sent his client a text message back, saying "I'm coming anyway will land in a field if I have to."
The client called the pilot again to suggest that he didn't take off but Pete said he had already started the engines.
The final words of a pilot killed in a helicopter crash in London last week have been revealed.
Pete Barnes, 50, from Nottingham, died from multiple injuries when the helicopter he was flying crashed into a crane on The Tower at St George Wharf in South London.
A pedestrian, 39-year-old Matthew Wood, was also killed as he walked to work.
Air Accidents Investigation Branch confirmed Mr Barnes had a radio conversation with air traffic control just seven seconds before the crash.
Mr Barnes requested to land at London Heliport in Battersea.
After being told Battersea was open, he replied: "If I could head to Battersea that would be useful."
He was told: "Battersea diversion approved, you're cleared to Battersea".
Pete Barnes' final words, just seconds before the crash, were: "Thanks a lot."