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Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Petition to Halt HS2 Enabling Work

This petition was created by Joe Rudkin.

"Because HS2 is an unjustifiable project, with terrible management that has not been subject to enough scrutiny, it will not face 'notice to proceed' tests before December. Consequently, HS2 Ltd must be stopped from trying to make it harder to cancel HS2 by maximising expenditure and destruction now.

Whilst supporters of HS2 pretend construction has started, the DfT has confirmed that only the highly destructive enabling works are taking place, years behind schedule. Construction and the release of full funds cannot happen until HS2 Ltd gets notice to proceed, by passing “Management Capability, Affordability of Contracts & Robustness of Revised Business Case” tests. If it is tested impartially on these bases, I believe it will fail all of them and be cancelled, so they should stop causing damage now."

If you agree, you can sign the petition here:

https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/255413

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You may also find the following of interest:


HS2 Must Be Cancelled Immediately

Andrew Brigden, Conservative MP for NW Leicestershire, has written an article about HS2 on the Conservative Party website. This is not yet official policy, just his opinion...

"It has never been clearer than now that HS2 is a complete mess. There has already been a 13-month delay in phase one getting signed off for ‘Notice to Proceed’ because the project has been unable to demonstrate management capability, affordability of contracts and the robustness of the business case. Add to that the fact that both the former and current chairmen have admitted that it can’t be delivered on time on budget and to scope, and becomes clear that HS2 should be immediately cancelled before any more money is wasted on it....

... Following the news of even more cost escalations, gagging of whistle-blowers and assertions that the true costs of the project have been kept secret and Parliament misled for years, it is now a national scandal...

... With Lord Berkeley, the former chair of the Rail Freight Group, saying that HS2 Ltd is ‘rampant with fraud’, and several other parliamentary colleagues very angry and determined to get to the bottom of this, it is clear that this scandal will not go away... One also has to ask that if we have been misled about the cost of HS2, what else has been said in support of the project that has no basis in reality? I would say almost everything..."

https://www.conservativehome.com/platform/2019/07/andrew-bridgen-hs2-must-be-cancelled-before-it-does-taxpayers-and-the-government-any-more-harm.html


The Inflection Point Has Been Reached

A government leak, originally reported in the Financial Times, has been re-reported via the BBC. It says...

"... there has been a subtle shift of tone in recent months from both HS2 and the government; a creeping acceptance that the project, in its current form, is increasingly unlikely to come in within its £56bn budget... This leak comes at a very sensitive time... Transport Secretary Chris Grayling, who has repeatedly insisted that the project HAS to be delivered within budget, is possibly leaving his post in a matter of days..."

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-49048823


Northern Powerhouse Has Priority

Boris Johnson has made a major speech about a plan for a railway - from Manchester to Leeds (44 miles), to be constructed ASAP. The Labour Party have countered by saying that that's not sufficiently ambitious, and what is really required is railway from Liverpool to Hull (128 miles), which is what they would build.

That scenario envisages that the Northern railway would be constructed first, with the result that construction of the London to Birmingham section would be deferred by some 10 years, or cancelled.