HS2 Ltd’s fifteen year plan

One of the banners at the Aylesbury HS2 Consultation roadshow gave a proposed timeline as to what will happen. I’ve copied the events below.

End 2011 Decision as to whether to go ahead with HS2
If decision is to go ahead
Early 2012 Launch of consultation on safeguarding and additional support arrangements
Summer 2012 Safeguarding, statutory blight and addition support
Spring 2013 Consultation on the enviroment, based on the EIA (Environmental Impact Assessment)
2015 Target date for royal assent
2017-2025 Construction starts and ends at different points along the route
2024-26 Commission and testing
End 2025/Early 2026 Line opens to passengers

NB this is not the exact wording they used, but HS2 Ltd would probably agree it is an accurate paraphrase.

118 comments to “HS2 Ltd’s fifteen year plan”
  1. going back to the tourism in the chilterns bit – national trust reports that behaviour patterns are changing. More people are opting for daycations in stead of vacations. taking a long holiday has decreased by 15% . Future tourism for the chilterns is looking good.

  2. I have read all of these comments. Gary and John are ignorant.
    Neither appreciate the issues that are being raised here.
    Unfortunately there are people who are too bigoted to see outside their own shells.
    I would suggest stophs2 channel energies to those people who can make a difference.

  3. My name is Justin Foulger and I am a railway enthusiast from Basingstoke and I do not what this pointless railway to be built because I can see from an out sides point of view. It will not benefit anyone who lives along the route because you won’t be able to join the trains at places such as Calvert and Brackley where a railway service would benefit the local community. It won’t carry many passengers because it only starts in London and Finishes in Birmingham and forget about Leeds because that’s why we have 140mph running on the East Coat Mainline and class 390 “Pendolinos” on the West Coast Mainline but only doing 125mph but they can do 140mph so pour more money in to the West Coat Mainline! To make more paths on the West Coat Mainline you could re-open the Bletchley to Oxford and Aylesbury line for freight trains to use so they can avoid London and the commuter trains into London so they have more paths to run on without freight in way. By re-opening the line from Aylesbury to Bletchley for passengers to use it will benefit the new housing development around the Calvert area and surrounding areas with transport links to the West Coat Main Line and the line from Aylesbury to Oxford to join services on The Great Western to Birmingham and the south with less congestion in London. So my point is re-open old railways lines that are still there and can be easily re-opened for a better community and national railway service. I say no to HS2!

  4. Gary says:
    May 15, 2011 at 11:55 am

    So how do you expect anyone else to know then?

    I dont but I certainly expect people I work to pay for to know particularly when the campaign for HSR calculates fares revenue and then seems to offset it against the capital cost?

    • Well why dont you ask them how they worked it out? Send an e mail, post a copy on here and lets see what the reply is….

      • I phoned them recently but they couldnt tell me (I rarely use email to avoid spam)
        I also suggested they put a forum on their website but no result as yet

        • So they couldnt tell you how they have worked out the figures for revenue…..but yet they have stated what they think HS2 will generate from the fare paying public…..?? How do you think they have done that ?

          Avoiding e mail because of spam threat is a poor excuse Im afraid, considering the amount of protection available, indeed stopHS2 use some on here!!

          • Your missing the point Gary
            This information should be in the public domain so that potential users like you can decide if its a viable transport option

            • No John I m not missing the point at all……….the projected revenue has already been stated. Like I said , why dont you ask HS2 how they have worked it out…..

  5. Peter says=======”Yes, there is – my post code is SK9 7QL – look that up and you’ll see that the North West arm of HS2, phase 2 is coming my way, which I’m more than happy about – in fact with a bit of luck the Manchester South hub, which will be sited at Manchester International Airport, will be about 5km from my house, linking me to the burgeoning pan-European high-speed rail network in just the same way as those close to St. Pancras are right now – a convenience I paid for in part through my taxes!”

    I;m confused-isnt there a Manchester-Euston service that currently takes about 2 hours?

    • @John: “I;m confused-isnt there a Manchester-Euston service that currently takes about 2 hours?”

      Agreed, you are confused

      There is a service from Manchester to London Euston and it takes about 2 hours 7mins to be precise but that’s not really the point is it. I actually used said service this very weekend – train was rammed in 1st class even at 07:11 from Wilmslow but then it was FA Cup Final weekend and the train started in Manchester, calls at Stockport, Wilmslow and Crewe so it was stuffed with City supporters and some Stoke fans who got on at Crewe.

      The real point, which you have deliberately ignored is carried in these words from my comment “linking me to the burgeoning pan-European high-speed rail network”

      The WCML doesn’t seamlessly link me or anybody else in the West Midlands, North West England with the pan-European HSR network does it – but HS2 will and that’s what really matters!!!

      • Have we not already done the european thing (see http://stophs2.org/news/1846-eurostar-connection)? You believe in a european renaissance where the Manchester-Frankfurt train is always full, others think this is no more than another nice-sounding piece of speculation and the direct trains will never appear (especially true given the lack of paths to even allow them to run let alone the passengers to justify them). You can get a train to the continent right now, just change in London (as you would with HS2) and off you go. Take a good book if you are going far though.

        • Andrew

          Yes and once again you’re avoiding the issue, which is a widespread trait across the anti-HS2 community.

          You blithely claim that “You can get a train to the continent right now, just change in London (as you would with HS2) and off you go.” but of course the practical reality without HS2 is radically different from your seemingly benign scenario.

          Only the advent of direct trains holds the potential to foster a sea change in travelling habits for those who reside outside the London/SE nexus of power and influence. Unless rail borne travel can become a credible alternative to short-haul intra-European air links, passengers won’t make the change but in every single case where such a credible alternative is put in place, rail wins over air.

          With the present infrastructure in place, the intermodal shift in travel behaviour cannot take place, RP2 doesn’t change anything in that respect (but you know that already). HS2 is a game changer but we won’t see that change until it happens, in just the same way that rail’s share of the London>Brussels/Paris market didn’t take off until HS1 opened and the overall transit time became comparable. HS2 will open up an entire new market of potential customers, residing in NW.England, West Midlands, East Midlands and Yorks-Humber Regions.

          If the arguments of the anti-HS2 brigade prevail, the rest of the UK will effecitvely cut off from the HSR revolution unfolding across the rest of our continent!

          • Hi Peter,

            So we are going over this again. I don’t think anyone is avoiding the issue: it might happen, it might not, but the fundamental point is that the whole European thing is a complete irrelevance to the justification or otherwise of HS2 – the percentage of users who would ever use HS2 to get to Europe is vanishingly small.

            I agree that currently although you can travel from anywhere to anywhere by train, currently only a few die-hards will take the trouble. I agree that direct trains are the key, because the whole changing thing and getting across a city (whether London or Paris) is both a time and convenience impediment – hence why the promises of direct trains from other UK destinations as part of the channel tunnel link sounded so good all those years ago. Never happened, but let’s move on.

            Where we start to diverge is that I believe that HS2 won’t change anything either – as you say it has to provide a credible alternative. At something over 2 hours from London to Paris HS1 is a very credible alternative to flying – even adding in the time to get to the station. Over 9 million people took Eurostar in 2010 (which is only 2 million more that in 2000, so 10 years of growth plus x billion spent on HS1 plus cheap advance fares has not been hugely game changing, but let’s move on).

            Now let’s look at Birmingham (or Manchester or Leeds): These are big, but not compared to London so the base number of people who would ever want to go to any particular destination is lower. They are a 100 or more miles further away – totally irrelevant on an air journey, very significant by rail. This only gets worse when you start talking about going to cities further into Europe, but let’s move on. Things could go two ways: maybe a 3-4 hour trip is OK and people will switch from air when going to Paris, which justifies the trains. Or maybe people stick with air because it is cheaper or better suits their overall journey, and then the numbers on the trains don’t appear, and then the direct trains get removed and people have to change in London. Which would happen? I don’t think anyone knows. Will airlines be quaking in their boots? Nope, because if rail does steal a couple of routes after a price war there are plenty more destinations that rail will never win. Will any of this make any noticeable difference to the future ‘success’ of HS2? Not a chance.

            At the end of the day the deciding thing for modal shift from air (or road if it comes to it) will not be taking a few 10s of minutes off one part of your journey, but something game changing elsewhere – if airline fuel were to be taxed properly for example. And should that sort of thing ever happen then people would both travel less and use the trains more regardless of whether they were on RP2 or HS2 – we will be no more or less ‘cut off’ whichever.

            • At a recent roadshow event, I spoke to Alison Munro (Chief Executive of HS2 ltd) – and we talked about trains running from the Midlands and the North to continental destinations, via HS2 and HS1.

              Alison agreed that the journey time from (eg) Birmingham to (eg) Amsterdam or (eg) Paris would be greater than the oft-quoted cut-off time of three and a half hours – and that therefore such a route might not attract much business away from airlines.

              Alison went on to tell me that this was not really relevant to the debate and discussion re: HS2, as HS2 is a domestic project designed to create (relieve) capacity on the West Coast Mainline. Alison told me that in fact, the proposed HS2/HS1 link is part of HS2 phase 1, simply because adding it later would be too difficult and disruptive.

            • Seems like you’re trying to have both sides of the argument – Alison Munro is quoted as some kind of ominpotent guru with perfect vision of the future – Alison Munro states that “the journey time from (eg) Birmingham to (eg) Amsterdam or (eg) Paris would be greater than the oft-quoted cut-off time of three and a half hours – and that therefore such a route might not attract much business away from airlines.” so of course this must be correct – this is the same Alison Munro that the anti-HS2 brigade is quite keen to slag off at the first opportunity – can the anti-HS2 crew make up their minds – either this business leader knows what she’s doing or she doesn’t?

              Now point me out if I’m wrong but those clever people at Deutsche Bahn (or Eurostar for that matter) don’t seem to share Alison’s viewpoint – why else would be they investing many hundred million (possibly billions) €uros in new trainsets to start running services from Amsterdam to London and Frankfurt to London – and the travel time between these destinations?

              London – Amsterdam, circa 4 hours
              London – Frankfurt, circa 5 hours

              What’s more Eurostar are investing £700million in ten new trainsets to allow them to open up new direct services between London and other European Cities; Geneva, Lyon, Marseille, Amsterdam have all been mentioned, some of these also lie beyond the magic time threshold that allegedly sees demand for rail over air fall plummet

              So someone, somewhere is woefully wrong and we won’t have too long to find out who has made a big mistake because when the Duetsche Bahn service starts up in 2013, although they’ve made noises about trying to begin in time for the London Olympics, summer 2012, we’ll be able to judge the veracity of the oft quoted myth.

              You won’t be suprised to learn that I’m with Eurostar and Deutsche Bahn on this one and Alison Munro, along with the HS2 passenger demand boffins are woefully wrong. I think the one thing they’ve got completely wrong with their demand forecasts is the make up within the overall figures. They’ve grossly overestimated the passenger demand between London and other UK provincial cities whilst massively understimating demand for direct through traffic to and from UK provincial cities to mainland Europe so instead of this latter element contributing perhaps 10% (which is why Alison made the statement you’ve repeated here) it’ll be nearer a 50/50 split. (although I accept it will take time for the services to establish themselves and gain popularity, perhaps 3 years?)

              However my prediction can’t be proved right (and Alison Munro wrong) unless HS2 and the direct link between HS2 and HS1 is built!!!

      • Peter – your always going on about this “pan European ” railway thing. It drives me nuts. Can’t you see they just want another line out of Euston? Who the heck is going to travel from paris to manchester on a regular basis to fufil those ridiculous demand forecasts? a very close relative of mine works for shell plc – all have been advised to avoid travel as much as possible. All my work is done remotely now – net meeting, webinars etc – this is the future. it fits with work life balance. Yes people will travel to Europe but for leisure not business – there just isn’t a market for that.

        The “capacity” issue that everyone rants on about is about commuters who get on at stops along the route to either London birmingham or beyond and then want to get off again. When I asked at the roadshow how much demand there was just to go from either Lon – Brum or Brum to Lon on an average peak time train, they couldn’t tell me. They couldn’t back up the demand forecasts. Whats more they said they are going to reduce all the fast services from the local services into London and put these onto HS2 so they are direct and you have to drive to either London or Birmingham to get on!!! Hilarious! i.e they said for example that Coventry to Birm is very overcrowded, so they will remove the fast lond to Cov to Birm service (1 stop) and put a direct service onto HS2. Then those in Coventry will drive to birm to get a train to London. Only 10 mins they said to drive …I nearly fell over laughing. So your average commuter, far from benefiting from HS2 will have a reduced service and now have to get in their car (assuming they have one!!) and drive and then PARK!!! Trans European what?? You are talking absolute twaddle. HS2 does NOTHING for the average commuter slogging back and forth to London to earn a living and support a family in the South. Don’t talk to me about North /South divide – try paying prices to live in the South!!! I slogged my guts out to afford to live in the home counties. Rich talks as if we have it on a plate. Oh sorry – can I help the fact I was born here – should I go and live up North then away from family and friends? Your chip is despicable – I’d almost call it discriminatory.

        We don’t need a new passenger railway we need better local services with longer carriages that are more frequent, serving the stops along the line where people live. We need more fast services from local stops en route not less. HS2 will not achieve this.

        What we also need is a freight line – a dedicated one. It doesn’t need to be high speed so it doesn’t need to go straight and can avoid sensitive areas and stop hacking off local residents. (who fully deserve to be hacked off about this environmental disaster to be.)

        Then that would take HGV’s off the road relieving congestion and hopefully the carbon emissions. Has anyone looked at that option? HS2 ltd when i asked just shrugged their shoulders and said it was a good idea.

        HS2 is a project at the initial stages where the consultants want “sign off” in concept, but the project is so “high level” in terms of detail that the “client” ie the consumer /taxpayer is not going to buy in. The devil is always in the detail and with so much at stake here, particularly environmentally where little facts are really known to government (if they were they’d probably have to change their minds), HS2 is a project that is doomed to fail. It is a project which needs a full public enquiry, with an emphasis on going back to the drawing board to see how High Speed rail should fit as part of an overall strategy to solve our transport problems.

        Unfortunately, instead of coming up with a requirement, and a real understanding of all the problems that UK plc faces, we are given a solution without enough detailed analysis. People along the route are hardly going to sign off on that are they??

        its a chicken and egg situation – the government are not going to fork out for an environmental impact assessment until they know that they have agreement to the scheme in principle – but they arn’t going to get that until people understand the environmental impacts.

        So what really is the point of a consultation? is it only to agree the idea in principle – but perhaps then, they should have laid it out at a higher level than what it is now – i.e not looked at the route but fleshed out the demand and other options and how it would be supported to achieve economic benefits for the UK. There is so much that hasn’t been thought through. How could I support it ever on this basis? Its all just a waste of money, time and effort.

        • @Missy: “Who the heck is going to travel from paris to manchester on a regular basis to fufil those ridiculous demand forecasts?”

          Who the heck wants to travel to London?

          The very last place I’ll be travelling to on a HSR service out of my Region is London!!!

          In fact I’d be quite happy to see HS2 cancel the planned section between Old Oak Common and Euston, thereby saving a large portion of the overall construction budget – it wouldn’t make the slightest bit of difference to me!

          Sorry if I drive you nuts but the feeling is mutual – HS2 is coming so you need to get used to that outcome and plan accordingly

          • And you know something we don’t? So this whole expensive consultation is a whitewash then?
            If you want to travel to Paris from Manchester I suggest you fly or take an existing train. Or better still why not live there? That way you will save all those carbon footprints.

            • @Stuart F: “If you want to travel to Paris from Manchester I suggest you fly or take an existing train.”

              errrr……Stuart – I think you’ve hit the nail on the head

              1. There is currently NO direct train from Manchester to Paris, which is exactly why we need HS2!

              2. Without a direct train option large numbers of consumers are already doing just what you suggest – flying, at potentially huge environmental cost – much of the environmental case for HS2 rests on intermodal shift, from short haul air to rail. Unless a direct railborne alternatives exist, people will continue to use short-haul air because it’s the only realistic option on offer – the experience of HSR in the last couple of decades is unequivocal – provide a credible railborne alternative and rail wins – every single time!!!

              Seems to me @StuartF that you are only concerned with the enviroment when it’s outside your door – the wider environment can go hang, just as long as you don’t have a high-speed train anywhere near you – go look up the definition of a NIMBY – you’ve just demonsrated said characteristics – perfectly!

            • Peter, sorry to break it to you but Manchester / Birmingham will Never have direct trains to Paris. Even if HS2 is built
              it will be Domestic Journeys only. There is not the financial case for having International & Domestic terminals. A
              Hs2 spokesperson told me as much the other day. So you still have to faff about in London for a connection.

              To think that somehow having a Hi-speed railway is eco-friendly is completely wrong. The amount of cuttings/land fill, land spoil, tunneling to be moved on hundreds of thousands of lorries- which run on Diesel, the concrete, the trains which run on thousands of volts- which come from power stations, nobody has any real co2 figures on this, mere guesswork.
              As for the North south divide, give me a break. 110,000 extra people pumped into London A DAY
              will not help any regeneration in Leeds.( Apart maybe from a shiny rail station). ‘Modal’ shift is prattled on about is sheer political B/S. This railway will not be for the masses. It will be however can afford £200+ round trip commute. The ‘Plebs’ will be left with a second rate service that will be run down so that the big buisiness who will run the Hi speed line will be able to maximise their profits. This is happening already with HS1.

              You want to transform the country for everyones benefit? Lets invest the money instead in super fast broadband for everyone in the UK. Like South Korea.
              That way we compete Globally. That will transform the economy. Don’t give me the ‘Nimby’ attitude , I wont see or hear from my area – hs2 if it goes ahead. But I will be paying for a £40,000,000,000 white elephant.

          • Peter – you make it sound as if high sped rail should be designed to be purely in the interests of ‘Peter Davidson’ So your advocating new markets opening up – and there was me naively thinking that HS 2 was being built to relieve ‘capacity’ issues for us poor hard done by commuters who are crammed in rush hour trains! At least that’s what HS2 Ltd want us to think as they said so themselves at the consultation. They also mentioned oil and how we are running out of it and the price going up etc etc.

            unfortunately tho Peter your HS 2 connection to HS1 is apparently going to run on a single conventional rail track and not at High speed.

            And have you asked your European counterparts how they manage to build high speed railways so much cheaper than the UK? Environmental factors aside, one can see why there might actually be a business case for high speed rail in Europe when it costs 4 times less to build the thing. But I guess you’ll be glad when HS2 is built costing every taxpayer at least £1000, and the trains are almost empty most of the day, how many HGVs will still be clogging up the M1 and the average commuter has to now stop at every stop to get to London (yes some us have to work there you know to pay the high costs of living in the South). Rich or Gary will probably be telling me to move job next! But at least you’ll get your Manchester to Paris jaunt hey? And there was me thinking this was meant to be a project in the ‘national interest!’

            Tell me Peter – why exactly do you want to go Manchester to Paris ? On a daily basis? Business or pleasure? Can you really see 1000 people on 14 trains an hour doing this ? At the consultation they told me that 3 trains an hour would go London to Birmingham and the rest would go to Leeds and Manchester.

            I want to hear more about the costs and benefits of a freight alternative. Any takers? It’s worth some exploration. Or has this been posted on already and I need to read the archives?

            But at least Peter davidson will get his European

            • Thanks Finmere – interesting debate about freight and especially the link to wikkipedia and grand central railway. Stunned that it was not approved when privately funded ESP given costs relative to HS2.

              I guess my simplistic thinking comes from the belief that whilst people may actually chose to travel less in years to come owing to improvements in technology, we will always need to move goods around the country. HGVs are clogging up the motorways but we also see huge lorries passing through small towns and villages – if that’s going to increase in years to come its just as bad as HS2.

              At the HS2 roadshow I attended, they said that hs2 would free up more space for freight on WCML but then it wouldnt be a dedicated line and would mean that freight then replaces much needed passenger services.

              I am just not convinced by high speed rail demand in the Uk – although I do see how some parts of Europe have benefited but then they weren’t connected up by rail to begin with. I think we better need to understand the problems that our country faces before rushing in with such a high brow solution.

              Freight line sounds like it needs more exploration and analysis. I wonder who would be prepared to put a business case together for that now? I think the principle needs to be accepted first then the route. That’s what they’ve done wrong with HS 2- they’ve tried to get the route agreed before getting people to understand and agree the principle itself. The case seems strong on the surface but when you dig into the detail it falls apart.

              HS 2 is a big mistake in it’s current form. Lets hope the transport select committee come up with something interesting in it HS2 enquiry. Am looking forward to that.

        • Missy – re your comment about dedicated freight line….would you be campaigning for that if indeed it was proposed and it just so happened to be exactly the same route that HS2 is taking ?

          • Gary, you agreed ages ago that no sensible person would propose a freight line that followed the exact same route as HS2.

            • No i didnt…..I asked the question would you guys support it if that was proposed, to which I never got a straight answer….

          • Sadly you’re about 15 years late, Missy.
            In the 1990s a group called Central Railways attempted to gain support for a container freight service linking North West England with mainland Europe, via Lutterworth, and a major part of the largely abandoned Great Central line,(1899-1966) through Brackley and the Channel Tunnel-following the vision of Sir Edward Watkin, who in the late 19th century planned a route from Manchester to Paris.

            Due to lack of Govern ment support, lower than hoped for traffic-not helped by problems with illegal immigrants and lack of integration between European railways among other factors, the scheme never got off the ground.

            The operating speed was to be 90mph, just 2/5 of that planned for Hs2

            Also, in this area, nobody wanted just a freight railway- actually I believe that, if the newly elected Labour Government had been more supportive, then ,as a condition of permitting the freight operation, a limited passenger service could have shared the route. But the Government were putting their faith in theplanned WCML modernisation and also in a “piggyback” or swap body road /rail freight system whi ch somehow never happened.

            The remains of the GC still exists largely intact- Aylesbury-Calvert occasional freight, Calvert-northwards, abandoned and overgrown, but still protected, Since closure, in Northants. C.C.
            structure plan for “possible future use”. .

            Chiltern have expressed “a long term aspiration” to go North, beyond Calvert to a”park and ride” station near Lutterworth (on the old GC route) to tap into traffic at the intersection of the M1/M6.Will it ever happen?…

            Had we retained the GC, open or “mothballed”,therefore available for improving without disrupting existing mainline services, I don’t think HS2 would have arisen.

          • As I remember, when this point was raised before, I for one said that I would not support the route in its present form. The Central Railway proposal for a dedicated freight line would run alongside existing railways and motorways and not despoil an AONB. And it was to be financed privately. And I think you agreed that the proposed HS2 route into London would not be appropriate for a freight line.

            • Yes we agreed it would be inappropiate to start it from euston……but as far as the rest of it goes…..

              In any event it was a hypothetical question……to which Jane is actually the only one who has answered it to a fashion…..

          • Gary I would have no objection to a freight line following the same route assuming that if it could bend rather than be straight it could avoid the most sensitive areas.

          • Gary yes I would definitely be interested in seeing some analysis on a freight line if it could get HGVs off the road. Economic and business case and costings would be a start. As John webber said it’s been looked at before but the government of the day were not supportive. It deserves a rethink as an alternative.

  6. I’d like to propose DR WHO as being the mascot of the stop hs2 campaign. Because the evidence on the pro side is so shakey, the only person who can really decide on this issue is a time traveller?
    Meanwhile I’d like more nurses, teachers, university places for young people………………untill the tardis makes an appearance and saves the day!

    • @Lou

      Perhaps a simple timepiece might be more appropriate for you because you seem to have lost your bearings in the timescale – this particular topic is headed by an article giving the timeline yet you somehow believe the cancellation of HS2 is going to miraculously provide (in the straitened financial times) funding for “more nurses, teachers, university places for young people”

      But the budget for HS2 isn’t now at all – in fact it’s more like ten years from now, so HS2 has absolutely zip all to do with current budgets – if you want to provide funding right now, you’d have to cancel CrossRail and ThamesLink, but don’t tell 7.5 million Londoners – they might be bit miffed at the sudden dissapearance of their long planned transport infrastructure upgrades?

      As for the Tardis it seems you already been using it because you’re living ten years in the future?

      • You raise an interesting point. When Anthony Adonis was asked on a TV interview where the money for HS2 would come from he said that funds currently allocated to CrossRail could be used for HS2 when CrossRail was finished.

        We still talk about £17bn to Birmingham and £32bn to complete the Y to Leeds and Manchester, but these are 2009 prices. It’s 2011 now and the prices of steel, copper, cement and diesel have gone up a lot, and likely to go up a lot more before construction starts in 2017.

        At the same time we’re seeing pay cuts, job losses, and cutbacks in public services. The Bank of England is revising growth forecasts downwards and inflation forecasts upwards. The government continues to spend more every day than it receives in revenues. Treasury bonds which used to be looked on as blue chip are now considered to be risky investments.

        While politicians are optimistically waiting for ‘the recovery’, others are saying that the era of perpetually expanding consumption and debt has come to an end. We are facing a new economic reality. When we get to 2017 and the country is even more in debt and the government has to make even more ‘hard choices’, it won’t just be nimbys calling for HS2 to be scrapped. The worrying thing is that it might not be stopped until the next parliament by which time £750m, which could have been used for something useful, will have been wasted.

  7. By 2027 the Japanese Maglev line between Tokyo and Nagoya is due to be completed, and Britain, with it’s brand new last century HSR line, will be seen as a backwards country.

      • Well if the rest of Europe wants to continue building high maintenance rail projects and keep making money off of each other, then that’s their business.
        But here in the UK, I think we should aim a little higher, make something that we can be proud of, something to make Britain Great. Britain, not something like HS2 that will detract from that,. HS2 will probably leave us feeling a little embarrassed if it ever gets done, it is a huge mistake.

          • Well so far HS2 Ltd has been biased in favour of HSR, Maglev has been all but ignored, dismissed in a single sentence in an whitewash of a whitepaper.
            The only study conducted on the use of Maglev in the UK was done by a group called UK Ultraspeed (you can read their findings on my site http://www.maglevuk.org/uku-resources.html)
            But we can tell from the track in Emsland that Maglev leave very little environmental impact, we find that land that lays underneath its elevate guideway is unaffected, it can still be used as farmland as it was before, ever cows can quite happily graze underneath oblivious to the 300mph Maglev above their heads.
            It really is a great technology, and the way it has been dismissed by HS2 Ltd and the government is scandalous.
            HS2 is a case of money for old rope and jobs for the boys, greed pure and simple.

            • The difficulty with Maglev, is that ,apart from costing twice as much as a conventional HS railway, it would not readily connect with existing routes.
              In a new , undeveloped territory, without existing networks, it might be appropriate; otherwise it would duplicate existing routes and require change points to transfer people and goods ,as in the mid 19th century, before the rail gauge was standardised.

            • Normally Maglev would cost more, however due to to abnormally high cost of HS2, Maglev is cheaper.
              HS2 will duplicate the West Coast Main Line isn’t that the idea?
              It is true Maglev would not go directly to smaller town station, but then neither will HS2, in both cases passengers will need to change trains.
              The argument that Maglev is incompatible with existing rail networks is misleading.
              Maglev track is physical different from rail track, but that doesn’t mean that it cannot complement the existing network.
              Now all things being equal, HS2 Ltd should of conducted an in-depth study of both technologies, but things aren’t equal and only HSR has been considered.
              Until HS2 Ltd produces a report comparing HSR with Maglev, all the reasons given against it are unfounded.

  8. just been to great missenden road show. one can only hear noise demonstrations for great missenden. they inform me no way of me listening to noise demonstrations at other locations. I asked him if he thought we were all NIMBYS as we are not just interested in our own village. How can I respond to consultation without knowing the full impact along the route?

    the environmental impact report takes 18 months to put together and is then presented as the environmental statement. Parliament will be asked to decide on whether any unmitigated environmental impacts are worth accepting in order for the project to go forward. There will be a ‘consultation process’, but at the end of the day MPs decide what the country is willing to sacrifice.

    I asked to see a noise map for public footpaths within 1Km of the rail track (quite a standard question i thought) but they only have noise maps for homes, which is the priority at this stage. We won’t get information on footpath noise blight untill the environmental statement is issued in 2 years. I pointed out to him that walking and cycling in the countryside surroundings is the primary leisure and tourist activity for the area. How can we respond to the consultation without this crucial information. this is the activity that brings people to live here, visit here, spend money here. Have they worked out financial losses due to the blight on this hugely important activity during construction and after completion and figured it into their business case. the answer is a resounding NO. For our area all this information is crucial and its not there. GO FIGIRE

        • Key figures in that report ……80% of visitors to the Chilterns AONB are local residents, the highest percentage are actually walking their dog….

          Only 2% of visitors were visiting from outside and staying overnight. Hardly a tourist industry which is likely to be decimated by HS2 is it ?.

          • Will it bring the UK economy to its knees? No. Might it have a significant impact in certain specific areas? Probably.

            Not that surprising most of the visits are from local residents and I suspect many of the rest are from London or nearby. That’s one of the attractions of the Chilterns – its an AONB very close to major population centres.

            I don’t think its a major point in the debate, although I do think there is a decent argument for specific financial assistance for local businesses in addition to residents if it does go ahead.

            • David…..the Peak District and the Lakes are also close to centres of population, and they do have a tourist industry. So Lisas point about that ( which is why I asked the question ) , is actually irrelevant.

              Agree with the point about compensation ….its a no brainer tbh…..

            • Hi Gary,

              The government seem happy putting an enormous value on the time of people travelling on HS2, even those travelling for leisure purposes. But somehow the time spent by people in the countryside has no value whatsoever? Maybe we are supposed to just sit at home or do something ‘more productive’ like go shopping for stuff we don’t need. That will work, at least until we grow fat or psychotic and become a burden for the NHS.

    • “We won’t get information on footpath noise blight…”

      For the love of God, can somebody, anybody here please tell me why “footpath noise blight” is being put forward as a credible reason to argue against the creation of thousands of jobs and a better transport system for millions of people for generations to come? I see no arguments here about cost/passenger numbers etc. This is absolutley unbelievable. Why on earth would somebody rank utter drivel like this as a reason to argue against what the government is suggesting are the benefits of HS2? What sort of person cares so little about their fellow citizens that they would genuinely place the noise levels on a footpath above the economic welfare of millions?

      • Rich – Economic welfare of millions? a better transport system for millions of people for generations to come? Did you not realise that there isn’t an economic case for HS2 that has been proven yet? The only economic welfare that HS2 will address is that of the construction industries and various consultants who stand to line their pockets quite nicely from this. The “jobs” that will supposedly be generated are mainly transfers rather than new employment. It was quite clear from the Transport Select commitees own enquiry into Transport that many who gave oral evidence were not convinced that large investment in transformational projects actually achieve economic growth and therefore an increase in economic welfare.

        I quote Theresa Villiers here and the resulting conclusion from the commitee

        The Minister, Mrs Villiers, told us that
        “[…] high-speed rail I believe will provide a major boost to our efforts to address the longstanding
        prosperity gap between north and south.”46 However, the HS2 business case does
        not include an assessment of the project’s regeneration impacts and so it is difficult to
        assess to what extent HS2 is likely deliver regeneration or rebalancing.

        30. The Minister accepted the need to integrate transport and economic development
        strategies but currently it seems that economic development aspects are being left to local
        authorities. Her answer did not convince us that there was an explicit government
        economic development strategy to accompany its proposals for the construction of HS2.48

        On the other hand, quality of life such as the right to walk in the countryside on a footpath that will eventually be blighted by an unknown level of noise (owing to the government not providing any information on this yet ) has no value? Money and economic benefits are not the only things that are important in life – having access to fresh air, countryside and being able to keep physically fit, the feeling that you get when surrounded by the beauty of nature. They are also valuable. Clearly though Rich – they are not valuable to you. Only a ultra high speed train ripping through an AONB for the benefit of a few fat cats is. Rich quite frankly you have been swallowing too much of the dTF’s propoganda and you need to read up on some of the alternative analysis including that by the transport select committee themselves.

        • Predictions are HS2 phase 1 will produce 1,500 permanent operating/maintenance jobs ‘in house’
          Phase 2 should do the same. total 3,000 jobs
          Phase 1 and phase 2 will provide 9,000 construction jobs these will be permanent as high speed rail expands
          Total 12,000
          Suppliers to HS2 will easily bring total up to 20,000plus
          Say average wage of £20,000/A. = £400million into the economy for starters.
          Savings on benefits, should bring the figure up to £600million
          Thats not a bad start

          More of the ‘fat cats’ you refer to live in the leafy lanes of Warks, Northants, Oxon etc it is they and you that enjoy the immediacy of country walks whilst those in the West Midlands suffer the noise from their cars belting up M1 M6 and M42 spewing out noise and pollution. They have to catch the train to get to the leafy walks you enjoy It is they who will be the major benefiiaries of HS2 will be those by gain acces to London markets and jobs and to the jobs and markets that HS2 will attract north of London.
          Stop being so selfish and myopic

          PS 2million trees would provide 64 metre linear forest each side of HS2 along its total length. An absolute wildlife bonanza
          Note also that birds of prey are not only returning to transport corridors. they are the top of the food chain a sure indication the lower creatures they feed on are also in good shape Lets hear less of your scare stories.

          • Ask a tree expert what the survival rate for newly-planted trees is. Failing that, ask gardeners what a very cold winter and a warm dry spring have done to their most recent acquisitions. I haven’t heard ‘horticultural operatives to care for 2 million trees’ mentioned in the list of job creations generated by HS2.

            Birds of prey are frequently to be seen along roads and motorways, true, but even in Germany the maximum speed of passing cars is probably 150 kph, not 400 kph. Have you ever had to change a tyre on the motorway with lorries passing at 70 mph/110kph? Not fun, is it?

            • Rose …..Lorries dont travel at 70mph, they are limited to 56…..and of course you wouldnt have to face changing a tyre on a motorway if you travelled by train.

          • HH,

            You are saying that if we spend £34billion we will create 20k jobs? At £1.7m per job? Sorry, there are far more effective ways of generating employment.

        • Did you not realise that there isn’t an economic case for HS2 that has been proven yet?

          Not really possible Missy, given that it doesn’t exist yet. It’s not possible to “prove” something either way when it isn’t there yet.

          Money and economic benefits are not the only things that are important in life…

          Another fascinating insight into the minds of Stop HS2 people. “You midlanders/northerners should be grateful for what you’ve got! You can’t have a much-needed, better transport link because I might have to listen to it occasionally!” I think the phrase you were looking for is, “Let them eat cake”.

          For the record, I really like the countryside, but the good news is that HS2 is not the end of it and there’ll be plenty left for everyone to enjoy. No need to worry.

          ..for the benefit of a few fat cats is.

          Not this again. You make it sound as if everyone on a HS2 train will be dressed like that cartoon character in the middle of Monopoly boards.

          Anyway, none of this answers my original question.

          • Hi Rich

            Please dont turn this into a north/south issue–are you saying thers’s no concern from Bham onwards as to where the Y shape routes will run?

            • are you saying thers’s no concern from Bham onwards as to where the Y shape routes will run?

              At the moment, there are no bonfires being lit, children being roped in to do adults bidding, or trucks with PAs on being driven into village centres anywhere north of Birmingham, despite the fact that information about HS2 has been out in the public domain for some time. However, we all know the reason for this. It’s because the route has not yet been announced. But when it is, and some more people discover the horror of being able to see the line from where they live, or start worrying that they too may suffer the untold misery of being able to hear a train from a nearby footpath, I have no doubt whatsoever that they will, almost overnight, become experts on socio-econmics and transport, and embark upon a campaign to try and explain to all pro-HS2 people the error of our ways. I wish bookies would take bets on it, as I suspect I would make a few quid.

            • @John: Please dont turn this into a north/south issue–are you saying thers’s no concern from Bham onwards as to where the Y shape routes will run?

              Yes, there is – my post code is SK9 7QL – look that up and you’ll see that the North West arm of HS2, phase 2 is coming my way, which I’m more than happy about – in fact with a bit of luck the Manchester South hub, which will be sited at Manchester International Airport, will be about 5km from my house, linking me to the burgeoning pan-European high-speed rail network in just the same way as those close to St. Pancras are right now – a convenience I paid for in part through my taxes!

              Don’t suppose you’ve seen the most recent ad campaign from Eurostar, exhorting people to travel by rail to the Med for their summer hols, instead of utilising the ubiquitous short haul budget airline we’re apparently all wedded to. According to the ads one can travel direct to Marseille with a simple transfer at Lille Europe and get there in a matter of hours during the same day – at least you can if you live within reasonable commuting distance of St. Pancras International but most UK tax paying residents don’t do we – we live oop North in the barren wastelands outside the realm of civilised society, but we still have to pay our dues into the central exchequer of course, to fund advances in transport infrastructure so London can maintain its status as a major centre of commerce!

          • Rich – and you totally missed my main point – which is whether large investment in transformational projects actually achieve economic growth and therefore an increase in economic welfare. Which at present there is no evidence for. So your statements about HS2 and the economic welfare of millions is just a grossly exaggerated load of propoganda. Who siad anything about North/South and let them eat cake – at no point did I mention geography – or Mary Antionette! I am responding to your statements in improving the welfare of millions! wherever they maybe. Someone has a massive chip methinks…………

            • Gary and friends, you think my comment is irrelevant and heartless to unemployed millions.

              What is the point of having an expensive consultation when crucial information for local people is missing. The ONE question I am interested in cannot be ansered. What if you aspired to buy or rent/settle in this area – your prime mission being to walk your dog along some of the most beautiful footpaths in the area. This information is highly relevent to ordinary people – sorry if they are from the south and employed, what a terrible crime they are committing to want high quality information so they can make decisions about their future. I also feel terribly sorry not just for unemployed people in every corner of this country (who will no be helped by this white elephant) but also for the many people I know who are extremely depressed about what is going to happen around here. The least HS2 could do is give us the relevent information for this area – its not relevent to an urban area but it is relevent to this area and many of the rural communities along the track.

              I never said foot path blight was a credible reason to argue against HS2 I said that I and many others need that information – otherwise why spend millions on a consultation process? once again a waste of tax payers money.
              By 2026 and beyond, if this line is built it will be really interesting to see if anyone north of birmingham benefited or if the last bits of green belt between cov and brum just disappeared and turned into ‘a london airport’ transporting people to the capital, centralising things even more around LONDON. with all hope of helping the north abandoned. who knows . Dr WHO?

            • Rich – and you totally missed my main point –

              No I didn’t miss it. It just wasn’t relevant to the question I asked.

              …Which at present there is no evidence for.

              And as I’ve already said, there won’t be any, because HS2 does not exist, and whatever figures the government come up with will never be good enough as far as you’re concerned. They can’t possibly produce any tangible benefits for something that doesn’t exist, and it’s too easy for you to just simply say you don’t agree with any projected figures, because you don’t want HS2 built for purely selfish reasons.

              As for propaganda – remind me which side is getting children to recite adults opinions on the matter?

            • ONE question I am interested in cannot be ansered. What if you aspired to buy or rent/settle in this area – your prime mission being to walk your dog..

              Oh of course, yes, the proposed benefits to millions of people, versus some people walking their dog without hearing a train. Forget about arguments about job creation, better transport etc. What’s more important is if people can walk their dog without hearing a train.

              Seriously, what planet are you people on? The more I read this website the more horrified I am at some peoples attitude twoards the rest of the country. Forget arguments about the economics of it for a moment – is there anyone at Stop HS2 with something resembling an ordinary set of morals and a sense of what’s right?

            • This is one for Gary who asked “which side is getting children to recite adult opinion on the matter”. To my recollection children have been giving their opinions for both sides – only I can’t remember where I read about the pro hs2 kids. I think it was at the Birmingham launch, or the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce.

              HOWEVER, if you check out this link you will see that there is very little “force” used where the kids are concerned. Gosh, you may even have to eat a bit of humble pie!! Now that’d be a first!

              http://stopthehs2.com (You may have to use this link: http://stopthehs2.yolasite.com/)

              Oh naughty boy – was it you who said you’d only be an hour away from London so you could apply for a job there? Tsk tsk, I thought you were keen on jobs being created in Brum? Are you thinking of sliding south? Draining the area of rich talent? You and how many more will use the line to move to the rich pickings of the South?? Are you actually agreeing with the proposition that jobs will be taken away from the north. Do I smell a whiff of hypocrisy?!

            • Oh Lellio…..I do find it easy to put you in your place……..can you find where I ve posted “which side is getting children to recite adult opinion on the matter”. ??

              And as for the hypocrisy……of course the opposite applies as well, Londoners would find it a lot easier to apply for jobs in manchester once HS2 is built…..particularly if they want to work for the BBC who are in the process of moving a large chunk of their organisation up here to Media City in Salford Quays. In fact , there was a piece about it on the BBC news website this week, stating that only 54% of their staff are actually moving as the commute would take too long for the rest. Humble pie lol !! You will have to be a bit sharper to get the better of me I m afraid…!!

            • Gary old pal you should do stand-up comedy. The kind that rambles incoherently about the place whilst missing the point of your joke! I note you made no reference to the youth of Bucks who have set up their own website, which was after all the point of my posting. And as for the Beeb – a lot of it is relocation package for existing employees and programmes.

            • Oh Lellio…..I do find it easy to put you in your place……..can you find where I ve posted “which side is getting children to recite adult opinion on the matter”. ??

              I noticed you avoided that Lelio……I think I might actually give up making a fool of you, as you are actually doing a much better job yourself !!

        • Once HS2 is built, I ll be able to apply for a job in London,,,,,as it will only be an hour away !!

          • Assuming you could post HS2 you already could but you choose not to. HS2 will make it more convenient for you. My commute is about an hour and a half door to door, its possible. Actually, the time on the train is some of the most productive of the day. You commuting to London may be good or bad for your local area, as I don’t know your circumstances I won’t venture an answer.

            Your convenience is important, so is the convenience of people adversely impacted by this proposal.

          • Quite correct Gary – my mistake in taking you for Rich and replying to two blogs in one go. A gentleman would have pointed out the error, rather than mocking it. An easy mistake however since you do seem a bit like clones in the comment department! My apologies.

          • Hi Gary,

            Another possibility would be to relocate yourself to London (and make it even more obvious that HS2 will do nothing to solve the north south divide). Or are you so hypocritical as to expect those who will be blighted by HS2 to move so that you don’t have to?

            • Not sure why Im being a hypocrite……those that are apparently blighted by HS2 have a choice, stay or move. And of course that applies anywhere in the UK to anything that is given planning permission which is likely to have an impact on local area such as windfarms, electricity pylons, roads etc….as I have stated , my own area found itself being sliced by the M60 extension, I had a choice and stayed.

              Why would I want to move to London when there is a new rail line being built which would slash my journey time by an hour ?

            • Gary. Unfortunately, many of those blighted by HS2 do not have the option to move following the anouncement of the proposals. That is unless they are able to afford to pay for two houses.

            • Gary. In some places people have already tried and cannot even get people to come and view their houses let alone make an offer. In other places, people get offers but at substantial discounts. Wealthier people have the choice to take the hit and move on, most cannot afford to do that and are therefore stuck where they are unless they can demonstrate an urgent need to sell and qualify for the EHS.

        • Rich according to hs2 Ltd 7 out of 10 new jobs will be created in London not up north.

          Oh some new jobs are going to be created? Some of them will be in the North you say? Well, that’s just awful isn’t it? That will never do. I mean 3 in every 10 means at least some jobs, and we can’t have that can we?

          Oh hang on – I see the problem and the source of your concern. It transpires that the majority of the new jobs are going to be in London, so only people with decent rail links to London (for example, *you*, judging by your post below decrying the state of the tube system), will benefit. Well, concern yourself not. Once HS2 is built, it’ll mean that a greater proportion of the population will be within commuting distance of the corner of the country where all the prosperity is located and where most of our tax money goes to.

          BTW – I know you’re not happy with the tube, but at least billions of pounds are being spent on projects such as Crossrail to try and make the situation better. This expenditure you will note, which *I* in the north have contributed to through tax, has met with almost zero opposition. Funny that.

          • Rich, your sarcasm is impressive but misplaced. The Minister claims that HS2 will address the north/south divide. By my calculations 7 out of 10 jobs created in London makes it worse. Those who oppose HS2 have nothing against the north. Why should we? Where are the options which might help the north much more effectively? We are presented with HS2 or nothing.

    • Even if HS2 noise level is 102dB sound level reduces by 6dB each time distance is doubled
      90dB is level of Lorry Noise 13ft from M42
      70db is noise level in pedestrianised St
      74dB typical level from car
      60dB Noise level watching TV
      HS2 noise level at all of the following will be less than 60dB
      Double glazing will reduce it by at least 10/15dB trees/cuttings/other physical obstructions will furter reduce it
      PS I used HS1 noise and broadcast it at 102dB in typical environs and results matched introductory data.
      HS2 is restricted to 320kph initially
      The world record speed tests in France show the TGV150 produced 102dB at 250mph as measured ‘very close’ to the train.
      Energy wise TGV150/Zefiro already achieve 15kw /seat family car 19kw/seat.

      • my favourite footpaths around wendover, from national trust owned coombe hill to wendover town – even HS2 reps told me quite freely and without me questioning them about the homes near to that route that will have noise levels in excess of world health organisation recommendations, but their noise maps only show homes, not paths. When i ask about the footpaths and cycle paths near to those homes i am told , ‘Oh that work won’t be done and disclosed until the environmental statement is released in 2 years time’.
        I shall have to go walking and cycling wearing sound exclusion head sets. ‘Poor little you’ I hear you sarcastically utter. Anyone who lives and exercises in the chilterns is not deserving of sympathy?. The point is, millions spent on useless consultations. Thousands spent on sound booths that don’t tell you what you want to know, only what HS2 want you to know………..
        And this is multiplied up and down the route over and over again………..not just the chilterns, but every area where people value things that HS2 don’t value.

        Culture – its not just music and language and religion. Its the way of life in a particular area. HS2 are culturally ignorant in my view.

        • Lisa….if you want to live somewhere where there is no noise, then sooner or later you would have to move house. The reality is that this is an investment ( rightly or wrongly ) in UKplc…..and its happening all over the UK. not just the Chilterns. And it will continue to happen as the nation grows, both economically and population wise. Those 2 facts cannot be ignored……of course we live in a democracy and you have the right to shout up about it without the fear of reprisals.

          • I attended the Wendover roadshow. I asked what they thought would happen when all these people start travelling on high speed 2 from Birmingham into London in 49 minutes and did they realise that when they get there they would still have to queue up 7 people deep to get on tube which will then erode any timesavings made. Funnily enough they didn’t have an answer. Having travelled on the tube many a morning I am wondering how the government can put a high speed strategy in place without thinking through the onward connections ? The tube is a mess and more people use the tube than everyone using mainline rail put together. How will the tube which is already at breaking point not to mention unsafe ( – I regularly see people faint on a morning journey) accommodate this so called massive demand for journeys from brum to London and then Leeds and Manchester into London?

            • Jane – I’m surprised the HS2 roadshow couldn’t answer your very valid question. The answer would probably be that HS2 provides for direct access to Crossrail at Old Oak Common, meaning passengers would not need to use the tube to access places like Heathrow, Bond St, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool St and Canary Wharf. The HS2 project also includes plans to improve access between Euston and Kings X/St Pancras, meaning HS2 passengers will be able to easily access Thameslink (another cross-london), as well as the piccadilly, victoria, northern, metropolitian, circle and H&C lines.

          • thanks Gary for allowing people to express their opinions without fear of being villified. Gary I know you are going to write a thesis or dissertation on HS2 as part of your training to get into the transport industry. I am seriously worried that with attitudes like this you are heading for a big fall. the campaign for the protection for rural england has got government agreement for great powers for local people in planning decisions and legislation comes in later in the year. you can find out about it on the CPRE website. Which way is the pendulum of power swinging Gary? With your attitudes you might get work in the US or Japan but swinging against the pendulum of power in Europe. I’m not criticising you. I think you believe in your cause but you are quite dogmatic in your views and the old style dictatorial transport executives are going to become a dieing breed.

            • Power to the people eh Lou…..we already have more devolved government now than at any time in our history. Even Network Rail are getting in on the act by devolving spending decisions down to regional level, the first 2 regions ( Scotland and Wessex ) are already live with this.

              Of course the bigger national projects are centrally funded and put together …..HS2 will be no different.

            • Lou, I think you are talking about work CPRE have done on the the localism bill and the national planning policy framework. The Localism Bill includes new duties
              around local referenda. So if a local group gets enough signatures on a
              local petition it would force the local authority to hold a referendum.
              The results wouldn’t be binding but should generate debate and
              consideration of how a proposal could be improved or dropped altogether. I don’t believe the new national planning policy framework is finalised yet but we have to keep lobbying for this to bring good things to the table, so that our country is not turned into a concrete UKplc. The fights there to be won, it certainly isn’t lost yet. Abit like the stop HS2 campaign

      • HH,

        You need to use consistent distances when comparing sound levels. TGV150 produced 102dB at 250mph at 25m (the interrnational standard distance for measuring train noise). Your diesel truck on M42 which is 90dB(a) at 4m (13ft) will be approx 76db(a) at 25m.

        In other words TGV250 is about 400 times the noise level of a lorry on the M42 (25dB delta)

        TGV250 noise levels by distance would be:

        At 50m = 96dB(a)
        At 100m = 90dB(a)
        At 200m = 84dB(a)
        At 400m = 78dB(a)
        At 800m = 72dB(a)
        At 1.6km = 66dB(a)
        At 3.2 km = 60dB(a)

        Therefore you would need to be 3.2km away from a TGV150 for less than 60dB(a) noise levels.you quote. You can mitigate – before and after measure show an average of about 12dB reduction from bunds and other noise barriers – but you are still looking at noise well in excess of WHO guidelines – 50dB(a) – at less than 2km from the line.

        • thanks voxoxx. thats the information that i wanted from the hs2 roadshow that millions of pounds has been spent on. thats the info they wouldn’t give me. its very depressing but i would like to know what to expect, i would like to make decisions, like whether to start up a hospitality business in the area. thanks vox oxx. it think my question got answered but not by HS2

            • Gary there is always room for future growth, and niche markets, but that won’t happen now, not for Wendover. Good luck in your future career by the way.

            • Thank you

              Judging by what voxopp has posted , you may want to consider a shop selling ear muffs…….

            • The two are not necessarily inconsistent. Voxopp is passby noise, the HS2 graph refers to the average over 18 hours.

            • The use of average values for an intermittent noise source is a cynical mis-representation of the real effects, and goes against the recommendations of the WHO and other bodies. If as is likely the eventual number of trains running is 10 or 20% less than forecast the average noise will go down by a similar amount. Will this mean a train is any quieter, or the effects are less disruptive? Obviously not.

            • Of course HS2 will be doing everything possible to mitigate noise …..and the yet to be determined rolling stock will almost be quieter than its equivalent today…..

            • Sorry if it seems pedantic, but HS2 clearly won’t be doing everything possible to mitigate noise. They will be balancing noise with cost and other factors. I look forward to seeing the pro-HS2 action groups campaigning for better mitigation and compensation

            • This is obvious: The most effective mitigation would be to place the entire route into a tunnel. Technically possible but financially ruinous. Result – tunnels kept to the absolute minimum.

            • Sorry for the delay but I’ve just picked myself up after falling off my chair. Are you seriously suggesting that HS2 won’t consider cost when deciding on mitigation? Assuming it goes ahead, I think they should spend significantly more on mitigation and tunnelling. However, if the government agrees to write a blank cheque I will be writing to my MP to complain about flagrant disregard for taxpayer interests. The practical issue will be that the DfT will almost certainly want to spend less than local residents want. There will be the same tension on compensation.

              Happy to provide links to examples if you really need them but I thought it was obvious.

            • Sorry…..are we talking about mitigation on the track itself ( which I was ) , or homes ?

              My understanding is that the track will be built with the latest noise/vibration damping equipment……

            • We are talking about mitigating the impact of noise on homes and the environment in general whether that be track design, tunnelling, noise bunds/walls, those clever Bose noise cancelling headphones or wishful thinking. If you would like to clarify your comment of 432pm please feel free.

            • Which is what I meant………of course the likes of insulating homes and compensation etc…are down to a panel.

              When it happened here where I live, I got 2k…..which was a good few year ago and im about half a mile away. Those a lot closer got in the region of 25k

            • so to be clear, HS2 will NOT be doing everything possible to mitigate noise, Dealing with noise is not easy, not cheap, and in some cases not possible despite any glib statements to the contrary.

            • Gary,

              HS2 have used noise levels averaged over 18hrs (Laeq) -which is what that HS2 document refers to. This is NOT the noise level you would hear as the train passes which is Lmax (hightest noise level on pass-by) or SEL (aveage noise on pass-by).This would be about 95dB(a) at 25m. HH used a figure of 105dB(a) so I indicated noise levels in that figure for pass-by

              While use of averaged noise is fine but it should also be used with pass-by measures to give an accurate view of noise levels – which is what WHO guidelines state.This is because intermittent noise has even greater impact on peoples health than constant noise (Malcolm Hunt, Berglund and Lindvall, et al). There is also pretty conclusive evidence that railway noise patterns (and aircraft noise to a similar pattern) has a highly detrimental impact on children – in some cases putting schooling back significantly (Hygge’s Munich study)

              Secondly, HS2 have assummed that noise from HS trains will be half as much as it is now (mainly from traction systems immprovements) but have excluded noise increase from aerodynamic noise (mainly from pantographs) from trains running at higher speeds than now.

              Finally HS2 have assummed mitigation levels of 17dB for HS2 – yet independent surveys on noise mitigation (US Fed Rail, Int’i Institue for Noise Enginnering) show average of 12dB noise reduction from mitigation measures.

              In summary, HS2 have assumed trains half as noisy as current ones, mitigation nearly 4 times as effective as exists now and have averaged noise levels over 18hrs which reduces the noise level by 20dB (which, as I’m sure you are aware, is 1/100th of the noise level). They also refuse to give any details on how accurate they think their noise modelling actually is. And they ceratinly haven’t been explaining the difference when asked at the Roadshows when asked.

              Can you think why they might be taking this approach?

            • Just in case anyone doesnt know what a pantograph is…..its the device that sits on top of a train which collects eletrical power from overhead line equipment. These are constantly being re engineered to produce the absolute minimum resistance to air flow.

              As far as noise issues goes, no matter what is said or not, the fact is that there will be an increase in noise, though of course it wont contravene any known regualtions or laws etc, otherwise there would be litigation. As I have said before, you can stay and accept compensation, or move …..simple as. But of course we live in a country which is generally more noisier than previous, as that is one of the prices we pay for the way we all live.

            • There is no ‘of course’ to places becoming noisier. Last time I checked I don’t recall hearing the birds singing any louder than they normally do, so I suggest you turn your walkman down and get some fresh air – you might notice that noise is becoming a design criteria that means things like cars, vans and lorries are less noisy than they used to be. EU policy is to reduce the number of people affected by long-term high noise (20% by 2020) – so HS2 yet again fails to be an environmental solution that helps us meet any targets. Your touching faith that some as yet undiscovered technology is going to make the trains of the next decade quieter by any amount that people will notice I will file along with expectations of trains that break the laws of physics with respect to the relationship between speed and energy consumption, and indeed hopes of the cheap carbon-free energy that will power them.

              And yet again you peddle the argument that people who don’t like this whole thing should somehow just take the money or move – as many others have pointed out this is not ‘simple as’. Even if these people could leave their homes why should they be expected to move so that a different set of people can stay living where they are and embark on long-distance commuting to London?

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