Text of Stop HS2’s letter in the Financial Times on Friday 1st July:
Ordinary people support Stop HS2
From Ms Penny Gaines.
Sir, Your article “Tory donors in funding threat over HS2” on June 28 states: “The pro campaign has raised about £120,000 from supporters, including rail companies and construction groups, one senior figure told the Financial Times. The anti campaign, by contrast, is thought to have secured more than £1m of backing, some of it from wealthy Tories.”
Stop HS2, the national campaign organisation against High Speed 2, is run on a shoestring. Our income and expenditure for the entire of last year is less than £15,000; our supporters come from all political parties and all income levels.
In contrast, it was reported in the press in April that David Begg was asking for £10,000 donations from backers of the Campaign for High Speed Rail. If all they have raised is £120,000 they must be disappointed that no more than 12 people responded to that call for funding, in spite of the presence of Philip Hammond at some of their events.
However, the Campaign for HSR is not looking for cash to build the proposed high-speed rail line itself. That will be from HS2 Ltd, the company set up, owned and funded by the government. A Freedom of Information request (FOI10/047) last year showed the government intended to spend £93m on HS2 in 2011-12 and more than £1bn to 2015.
It is clear, when it comes to funding the proposed high-speed rail line, the pro-HS2 side has far more money available to it than those opposed to it. But, with more than 40,000 signatures on our online petition from Norfolk to Northumberland and the Isle of Wight to Scotland, we have the support of far more ordinary people then Prof Begg’s organisation.
Chair, Stop HS2
Stop Hs2 has achieved a lot with a small amount of funding over the last year: we organised the national convention at Stoneleigh, Lizzy Williams walked the entire proposed route of HS2 last year, we held a Parliamentary Lobby Day at Westminster, gave evidence to the Transport Select Committee’s inquiry into the Eddington report – our evidence led to the current Transport Select Committee inquiry into High speed Rail. This website has over 400 articles, and leaflets that you can download and print.
So far everything we have done has been by volunteers, but to build on our success to date, we need funding. If you support our work, please donate some money to us. Cheques to Stop HS2 can be sent to Stop HS2, 131 Warwick Rd, Kenilworth CV8 1HY or you can pay directly into the bank account Lloyds-TSB, Sort Code 30-94-93, Account no, 34934760 or you can donate via Paypal (please note paypal take a commission, so if you can donate another way, please do).