Govt 'fightback' over HS2 plans

The Prime Minister has said today marks the "fightback" by the Government over controversial plans for the HS2 rail link. The Transport Secretary will highlight a commissioned report claiming the project will provide a £15 billion economic boost.

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Campaign group: 'HS2 unnecessary waste of money'

A spokesman for HS2 Action Alliance said that the Government's "need for a political legacy" has overcome the need for an improvement of existing rail services. Richard Houghton said:

Much has been made of the potential disruptions of upgrades to the WCML but of course the major upgrades have been done and the required developments to release capacity would be tiny in comparison.

Indeed the disruption in converting a First Class carriage to a standard one, or from train lengthening is nothing compared to rebuilding Euston and having several platforms out of use for eight years that HS2 requires.

But this pragmatic unsexy approach doesn't fit with the need for a political legacy that is so clear in the Government's increasingly strident defence of this white elephant.


Transport Secretary defends controversial HS2 project

The Transport Secretary has defended the controversial HS2 high-speed rail project which has come under criticism from campaigners, Labour, and the public accounts committee.

Patrick McLoughlin said: "Any big major infrastructure project like this will led to criticism, of course it will. you're not going to build 350 miles of new railway and not have criticism.

"There is a sceptism with government ministers promising a glorious future which is some way a way down the line, unless we make these type of decisions now we don't get it."

  1. Central

Campaign group argues of 'hole' in the HS2 figures

Campaign group Stop HS2 has argued that the Government's figures on HS2, which say the train will provide a £15 billion boost to the economy, are flawed.

Stop HS2 Campaign Manager, Joe Rukin said:

“It seems the big ‘relaunch’ of HS2 consists of rehashing the discredited argument that no-one works on trains.

Charles Dickens was proving that wrong 150 years ago, and unlike todays commuters he didn’t have a laptop."

McLoughlin: High-speed rail not some untested fantasy

The Department for Transport has been tweeting extracts from Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin's speech about the HS2 high-speed rail project:


Ex-Welsh Secretary: HS2 'shouldn't require a fightback'

The former Welsh Secretary Cheryl Gillan, whose Chesham and Amersham constituency would be affected by the HS2 rail link, has criticised the Government for needing to launch a "fightback" on the issue:

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