The managing director of Newtork Rail's network operations told the Today programme that any attempt to upgrade existing lines, rather than implement the HS2, would inevitably lead to "very heavy disruption" to services.
Spending £20 billion on upgrading the existing network isn't an alternative. The disruption that would be caused would be a nightmare. This report makes that absolutely clear.
It would only give us a third of the additional capacity which would mean that we would not be able to put more freight on the rail, we would not be able to put additional services into intermediate stations.
More top news
Experts have warned that Ash dieback's impact on millions of trees could have serious consequences for the landscape and wildlife.
White House officials said that the US intelligence community has confirmed the death of Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Omar.
Jamie Oliver and health experts have been asked to help the Government in tackling the problem of obesity in primary school children.