The Church of England has joined opponents of the Government's HS2 proposals, warning that current plans for constructing the line mean human remains will not be treated "in a decent and reverent manner".
The Archbishops' Council, which is led by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Archbishop of York, says there must be changes to give greater protection to remains which have to be exhumed along the route.
In a petition to the House of Commons, the Council says that works authorised by the Bill will involve the destruction of three burial grounds consecrated for the burial of the dead in accordance with the rites of the Church of England and the removal of human remains and monuments from them.
They have complained that the link will cut through their estates,cause noise and damage areas of outstanding natural beauty. The link will speed up travel time between the north and south.