Liverpool Riverside Labour MP says building a new high speed rail link between London and the North West is essential
Former Labour chancellor Alistair Darling has strongly attacked the HS2 rail project saying its economic benefits are "highly contentious".
Former business secretary Lord Mandelson says the proposed HS2 rail link between London and the North could be "an expensive mistake".
Former business secretary Lord Mandelson has urged Labour and the Government to think again about the controversial HS2 rail link, intended to speed up journeys between London and the North, saying it could be "an expensive mistake".
The Government's plans to introduce High Speed Rail 2 were opposed by 37 MPs, many of them believed to be Conservative backbenchers, in a House of Commons vote tonight.
The Bill was passed by a majority of 303.
Protesters against a proposed high speed rail link between London and Manchester will take their fight to the Court of Appeal today.
HS2 Action Alliance argue the government's plans do not consider the environmental impact of the new line.
Merseyside MP Maria Eagle as called on the government to stop "dithering" over the proposed HS2 rail link.
It comes after a report claims the UK is still behind France and Germany in terms of high speed rail journeys.
HS2 will dramatically cut journey times between the North West and London.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has said that those who need to sell their house but struggle because of the HS2 plans will still be helped and that he wants the line, "to create jobs and prosperity not to harm it."
"I understand how proposals like this can affect the property markets so compensation will be as generous as on the first phase, and more generous then when we built the motorways."
Transport Secretary says that the HS2 will be first main line north of London for nearly 120 years.
Patrick McLoughlin has told the House of Commons that it is not just about faster trains to London - but about how our greatest cities are linked.
Mr McLoughlin said he is determined that HS2 benefits will be spread much wider than just those places served by the line.
The Prime Minister says the money to pay for HS2 will need to come from 'a balance' between the Government and 'the train user' - but expensive tickets are necessary for 'Britain to be a success'. See the full interview above.
There has been mixed reaction to plans to extend a high speed rail line to Manchester.
The £33billion project will dramatically reduce journey times to London, however critics say it will ruin parts of the Cheshire countryside.
David Cameron was resolute when asked about Tory opposition to the HS2 project: "This is going to happen. I have been a strong supporter right from the start." The Prime Minister continued:
– Prime Minister David Cameron
These are difficult economic times, but I think that is precisely the time you should be planning for the future, working out how we link up the cities of our country, how we reduce journey times, how we spread wealth and prosperity around the country.
We do need to rebalance the economy, it has been too dominated by the South and by certain industries and high speed rail will really help to create a better balanced economy.