HomePeopleActivitiesParliamentary debate set on HS2 after petition breaks through threshold

Parliamentary debate set on HS2 after petition breaks through threshold

WEEKLY NEWSLETTER SIGN UP

The media is reporting some MPs have backed a petition to scrap HS2 ahead of a Parliamentary debate in September, that the Stop HS2 campaign reports was set up by Chris Packham.

HS2 will go before Parliament following a petition which, before it was closed, reached 155,250 signatures – the threshold for a debate being 100,000. The topic will be put to MPs on 13 September.

The petition, still on the UK Government website, reads: “We ask Parliament to repeal the High Speed Rail Bills, 2016 and 2019, as MPs voted on misleading environmental, financial and timetable information provided by the Dept of Transport and HS2 Ltd. It fails to address the conditions of the Paris Accord and costs have risen from £56bn to over £100bn.

“Our environment and economy are in peril. HS2 is destroying nature and inflicting suffering on businesses and property owners. Government is investing in an inept and recklessly run project, offering poor value for money. HS2 will not reach Net Zero by 2050 nor help us level up the North. The pandemic has changed how we work forever and invalidated the business case. Given the climate emergencies we face, and now the economic and pandemic crises – Parliament must vote to repeal the legislation.”

Esther McVey MP.

Some news media report a number of MPs back the petition. MailOnline has a quote from Esther McVey MP, the former Minister of State for Housing and Planning, describing HS2 as a “white elephant”, and a headline from The Telegraph reads “Put HS2 ‘out of its misery’, senior Tories to urge ministers”.

The UK Government has posted a 707-word reply from the DfT on the petition page, saying: “This railway is a long-term investment which will bring our biggest cities closer together, boost productivity and provide a low-carbon alternative to cars and planes for many decades to come. During construction, we want HS2 to be the most environmentally responsible major infrastructure project in UK history.”

The reply added there was a “commitment to greater transparency” on HS2, with bi-annual reports made to Parliament. It also said measures had been put in place to protect the environment and mitigate effects of the project on it, and that compensation schemes have a “renewed focus” on those impacted.

“For the reasons set out above, the government has no plans to repeal any legislation relating to the development and delivery of HS2,” the statement said in its conclusion. “However, we will continue to welcome further public and parliamentary scrutiny of the project.”

The government’s response can be read in full here.

3 COMMENTS

  1. “Put HS2 out of its misery” say senior Tories who go everywhere by car.

    We need the capacity. What’s the point in building a slow speed line? Or even worse, messing about with the West Coast Main Line again?

      • That’s not what HS2 is all about. It’s about getting up North at all! It’s all about capacity not speed.

        And the reason that it is £100 billion not £35 billion is because so many pressure groups have got the design changed so many times that costs have rocketed. Putting more of the route in tunnels or deep cuttings is exactly what Victorian landowners did in the nineteenth century, which bankrupted some of the early railway companies. Now it is MPs and ‘ecologists’ who are doing the same thing again, with the same result, to look after their own personal interests not those of the nation as a whole.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -

Latest news

Fearne Cotton and Paul Merson join Rail Wellbeing Live 2021

TV presenter Fearne Cotton and footballer-turned-pundit Paul Merson have been announced as speakers for Rail Wellbeing Live. They join more than 100 others giving presentations...

Train hits buffers at Enfield station

An eight-car London Overground train travelling at slow speed hit buffers at Enfield station at around 08:20 on Tuesday 12 October 2021. Around 50 people...

Dartmoor line services set to resume after almost half a century

After almost 50 years, the Dartmoor line between Okehampton and Exeter is set to reopen.  Services will resume from 20 November, ahead of the originally set schedule. The...
- Advertisement -

More news

Keltbray takes over NMNC’s infrastructure assets

Keltbray Holdings, the specialist engineering and construction company, has agreed to acquire a portfolio of Infrastructure contracts and associated assets from the liquidators of...

World Cup of Stations returns for third year

Voting has commenced for the Rail Delivery Group’s annual World Cup of Stations competition. In 2020, Glasgow Queen Street was voted the winner, after a...

Business performance improvement specialist wins first rail contracts

Mace Dragados JV, the principal contractor redeveloping London Euston station for HS2, has awarded a six-figure contract to business performance improvements firm STC Insiso. The...
NEWSLETTER SIGN UP