'2,770 weekend rail closures needed' to rival HS2

The Government is due to publish a report, prepared by Network Rail and management consultancy Atkins, setting out the case for the HS2 high-speed rail project.

A graphic of the HS2 project.
The Government is hitting out at critics of the HS2 national high-speed rail project . Credit: HS2/PA Wire

This is believed to have concluded that there would have to be 2,770 weekend closures - totalling 144,000 hours of work - on the East Coast, West Coast and Midland main lines if it was to replace the intended capacity of HS2.

The study warns that, during a typical weekend, the journey time from London to Leeds could more than double from two hours 10 minutes to more than four-and-a-half hours.

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HS2 predicted benefit falls

The expected benefit-cost ratio of the HS2 has been revised down in the Government's latest report, falling from £2.50 benefit for every pound spent to £2.30.