C4 Dispatches programme on Monday 11th February at 8pm, presenting all the issues associated with the planned rail line. We have received the following information from the Stop HS2 team.
If the title of “HS2, the great train robbery” wasn’t enough of a giveaway, in the trailer we can see the reality of the crush hour conditions that HS2 won’t solve, Andy Burnham admitting if it was an ‘either-or’ he wouldn’t chose HS2, and CEO of HS2 Ltd Mark Thurston coming across like the dodgy used car salesman spiv that he clearly is.
More importantly, and as we have been reporting for the last six months, the political winds have very much changed in with regard to HS2. The projected costs of HS2 have kept going up, the construction is clearly years behind the original timetable, and we are now at the sharp end whereby a decision to absolutely commit to HS2, is now a decision to accept spending about five billion per year for the best part of twenty years. This is why, as Dispatches reporter Liam Halligan says in this interview, the politicians he has been talking to have seriously been questioning whether HS2 should happen at all.
The reality is quite simple, too many experts are saying that HS2 could easily cost double the projected £56bn, and now the ground surveys are coming back it is clear HS2 cannot be delivered to the promised specification at the projected cost. This might have always been obvious to many of us, but now even the former chair of HS2 Ltd Sir Terry Morgan has admitted that ‘nobody knows’ what HS2 will end up costing and that ‘something has to give’ in terms of cost, scope and timetables. Quite simply, HS2 as promised cannot be ‘on time’ or ‘on budget’, no matter how many times Chris Grayling says it is.
All of this is why we’ve seen Grayling and others desperate to pretend that the archaeology, demolitions and utilities diversions on Phase 1 are actually construction, meaning it can’t be cancelled, when cancellation has never been more likely. A fortnight ago we witnessed this ridiculous charade of Government calling on the press to witness it lobbying itself, along with a host of the firms with a vested financial interest in seeing HS2 built, to demand that HS2 in its entirety goes ahead. The whole thing stinks of desperation, because HS2 is well and truly on the ropes.
For now, we need you to get the word out and share this email and the links inside it. We’ll also need those of you on social media to be there on the #HS2 and #Dispatches hashtags on Monday. After that it is time to do everything we can to lobby politicians and raise awareness of the disaster that HS2 is.
Joe and Penny / Stop HS2
For more details see www.stophs2.org
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The P&TGRS doesn’t have a view on this development but wanted to share the information to everyone.