'Labour's secret £6bn plan' to scupper HS2 rail project

Senior Labour figures have been secretly considering an alternative route to the HS2 rail project, according to a report in The Sunday Telegraph. It appears the shadow chancellor, Ed Balls, has been provided with a rival £6 billion plan.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne takes part in a tour of the train wheel manufacturers Lucchini UK, at Trafford Park, Manchester. Credit: Christopher Furlong/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The option would reopen a closed line from the 1960s from London to Nottingham, linking Leeds with Manchester.

Cross-party support for the £42billion scheme will be key to the success of HS2, taking into account the long-term funding commitment before trains begin running in 2026.

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'14 years' rail plan disruption

An alternative to the HS2 would result in 14 years of weekend rail closures that would "cripple" the three main routes to the north, according to a Government commissioned report out today.