Press Release: Reaction to HS2 Announcement
The news that the flawed, highly criticised HS2 project is going ahead is of great disappointment to residents of Hillingdon and many tax-payers in this country.
The majority of the great British public does not want HS2 as proven by a petition signed by 108,000 people (as opposed to 500 signatures on the pro-HS2 petition); by the overwhelming response to the consultation of around 55,000 responses; over 1,000 letters to Justine Greening through one website alone and on-going protests and action all along the route. At a cost of £51 million per constituency in the UK everyone will be paying for this and less than 3% of the population are likely to use it regularly.
Many credible high profile groups and individuals have criticised the scheme ranging from the Adam Smith Institute, the Green Party, the Tax Payers Alliance, Andrew Gilligan, Christian Wolmar, Boris Johnson, the Transport Select Committee, Sir Christopher Foster, Archie Norman, Simon Wolfson, Institute of Economic Affairs, the Telegraph, the Guardian, the Sunday Times, Anthony Bamford, the Economist to the Campaign for Better Transport.
Some supporters of HS2 are suggesting it can create a million jobs – HS2’s own documents state it will create only 40,000. Of which 70% will be in London (so much for curing the North-South divide!).
It is a sad day for Britain when tax payers money is spent on a vanity project that won’t be ready for 15 years while there aren’t enough jobs now or enough places in schools, hospitals and prisons – the real capacity issues Britain is facing.
Some simple and far cheaper improvements to our rail system could solve rail capacity issues and sooner, and investment in high speed broadband instead could boost British business far more all over the country for much less money
That the government has decided to tunnel the section of the route through Ruislip is good news for people who faced losing their homes and gardens and we are proud we have got local voices heard through our campaign. However, this is not something to be grateful for – the route should never have been designed without one. Additionally tunnels have their own problems which we will now study in great detail and some homes may still be lost as “air-vents”. For residents in other areas of Hillingdon they face terrible losses of homes, green spaces and noise pollution as well as construction chaos. We also continue to wait for the plans for the Heathrow Spur that the government chose to delay and not include in the consultation.
We will continue to fight this scheme on behalf of local residents and on behalf of all British tax-payers.