1. ITV Report

Cameron says HS2 WILL go ahead

Proposed HS2 rail line Photo: HS2 company video

HS2 'WILL be built' says David Cameron.

The controversial High Speed 2 project (HS2) "will go ahead" and will be "a top priority" for the Government, Prime Minister David Cameron is expected to say on Monday.

He will argue the £32bn rail line is a vital boost to the economy and will create tens of thousands of jobs, boost the economy and bring the North and South of England closer together.

He will confirm plans to extend the line from London to Birmingham to Leeds and Manchester.

However, plans to link the line to Heathrow will depend on a separate review into the future of airport expansion in the South East. That will not report until after the next election.

The line will pass through parts of Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, and many local people say there is no business case and areas of natural beauty will be badly hit.

Campaigners will be furious that an announcement is being made before the High Court announces a decision on a Judicial Revue into the project.

Led by councils in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire the action centres on claims the Government failed to properly consult on the scheme.

"The HS2 proposal is fundamentally flawed and announcing the routes to the north to bolster support will backfire, the Government will soon find that more people know more about HS2 and opposition will only grow. They will say it is good for the environment because it sound like it might be true, but The Green party oppose HS2 saying it is ‘Socially regressive, environmentally damaging and bafflingly irrational’. They will say we are running out of capacity, but long distance travel on the West Coast Mainline is dropping and business use is dropping too. Arriva have applied for an open access long distance franchise, so they clearly think there is capacity to run more trains and it is improvements local sustainable travel which the country needs, not a fast train for fat cats.”

– Stop HS2 Campaign Manager Joe Rukin

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