Official Government passenger forecasts destroy the case for HS2.

Whilst the current mantra for Government is that HS2 is needed because to deliver additional capacity on the rail network, a parliamentary question has revealed that the Department for Transport is not forecasting any growth at all in the number of rail passengers. In fact, the DfT are predicting that the number of rail passengers will peak in 2015 and, at least until 2040, never reach those heights again.


4 comments to “Official Government passenger forecasts destroy the case for HS2.”
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  2. Hello Patrick!
    Have you seen the latest figures produced by DfT,,they say that the number of rail trips is likely to decline from now until 2040.
    A pity they didn’t tell you before.
    Just thought you ought to know, in case they’re keeping anything else from you.

  3. Also worth noting that the average journey length is expected to stay about the same at just under 25 miles. Means there is no expectation that there will be either a significant rise in long-distance or commuter passenger traffic in the next 25 years.

  4. What this govt forecast clearly demonstrates is that no one takes a jot of notice of them except when a minister needs to pluck out a piece for a headline-grabbing fix. Thus, according to this reply, over the 25 year period, only car trips will increase in number, presumably as a result of the previous trip’s pothole crunch having proved a bridge too far.
    Govt uses its stats to ‘prove’ that HS2 moves people out of London to the North but proudly proclaims that East Coast’s IEPs will get more people faster than ever before – into London. But, having built up a customer base in its initial 10-11 years, EC could lose a significant slice of this when Edinburgh / Glasgow gets access to HS2 in 2026. At which point, the WC franchise will definitely be down the pan, not only losing most of its business class but having to hand over key slots north of Crewe to the GMtL-af! franchise (Get Me to London – and fast!). They may as well simply latch the remnants onto everyone’s favourite – Cross Country.
    As Peter Delow pointed out:
    govt continues to change tack creating new uncertainty for new places, leaving other blighted areas still not sure if or whether HS2 will pass them by.
    From the top town in England, Skipton, you can now set off at 06 30 and be directly in London in comfort at 09 30. Come HS2/3 and it’s not just a change of platform in Leeds but a change of station. Similarly, when you switch from HS3 to HS2 in Manchester (do not expect any joined up thinking, here) but, at this point, you’re only a little over an hour from London. Total travel time 3 hours (National Rail Enquiries do not include any time for changing stations, so why should HS2?) so Skiptonians will have no cause for complaint.

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