This week, HS2 is due to come up in Parliament twice. On Wednesday, Stone MP Bill Cash has organised a Westminster Hal debate at 9.30, which you can watch here. On Tuesday chancellor Philip Hammond is in front of the Economic Affairs Committee from 3.30, and one of the subjects they intend to bring up is HS2. Hopefully this time, someone will have briefed the man in charge of the UKs finances on just how much HS2 is projected to cost.
You’ll be able to see the EAC hearing here. Like many of the issues they intend to bring up, HS2 was one of the issues the EAC have previously produced a report on, and like other committees which have looked into HS2, they found the project to be seriously wanting, with one of the best quotes during the hearings coming from Lord May of Oxford.
Of course the one we’re really looking forward to is when the Public Accounts Committee look at the upcoming National Audit Office report. We don’t know when that will be as of yet, but last week the NAO published what they are actually looking into:
- How HS2 Ltd developed its estimate of the cost to acquire the land and property required to build Phase 1 of High Speed 2, and how it communicated this to Parliament;
- HS2 Ltd’s capability to produce robust estimates of the cost of land and property and to acquire the required land; and
- HS2 Ltd’s performance to date in acquiring land and property.
It’s almost as if the NAO have picked a topic, knowing they will find HS2 Ltd have failed spectacularly……..