On the 4th of February, HS2 Ltd issued a press release about the phase 1 property c0mpensation consultation, saying that there had been a “healthy response” and a “strong response”.
They said that “Responses will now be analysed”: what they didn’t mention is the way they ignored a significant number of responses to the 2011 national consultation into high speed rail. Of the 55,000 responses to the 2011 consultation they received, they failed to analyse over 1000 responses. These included the Stop HS2 campaign manager’s personal response and responses from HS2AA, Cherwell District Council and Heathrow Hub who were all involved in Judicial Reviews over the Consultation. The Department for Transport owned up to losing these responses on two separate occasions (although they can’t know how many responses were irretrievably lost): see
- As Greening ordered to explain growing HS2 consultation errors in court, HS2 chief says methodology was inadequate.
- Department for Transport admit to ignoring another set of HS2 consultation responses, claiming “they would not have made a difference”
- HS2 Consultation – did they ignore your reply?
This consultations that have just closed were for Phase 1: there is another consultation for properties affected by Phase 2. The information can be found on the HS2 Ltd website here. we would recommend that people who are affected look closely at what is proposed, and also at the information provided for the phase 1 consultation.
This is the week of government recess is this the week the long overdue Judical Reviews will be announced.
The processes of negotiation and consultation around HS2 are Orwellian.
The project reminds me of the windmill in animal farm and HS2 ltd Dept of Transport and Government Lobbyists are like the Pigs in the House at Animal Farm. Increasingly r,emote and aloof, self- pampered and pontificating.
Dissent is to be destroyed.
London CPRE have shown themselves to an agency dominated by politics and personal vanities/accommodations be arguing against their own five principles and are acting to destroy the Chilterns AONB for which they had petitioned and advocated to well and hard in its formation.
Rather like Chronos easting his children.
An indication about probity, honesty and the Byzantine process in HS2 is to be found in the Tatton Kink.
The news coverage and the significance of this has been poor.
Challenge in the House has been poor, rendered to a simple statement from Cameron, a bit of a jibe from Ed and a hastily constructed withdrawal from East Cheshire who are now asking for comments as though nothing had happened.
The Tatton Kink represents the plasticity of the spun truths, the influenceability of HS2’s planners and also gives and insight into how they plan,
The seconr stage is not high speed, It has several kinks that slow it. Tatton has cost 0.7Bn to 1.2 Bn to detour.
The same amount of money to tunnel the entire Chilterns was denied by Greening because of costs and the need to straight runs.
As to the Tatton KInk the evidence and voices were greater than reported in the national press.
Heres an article that got away and was not countered.
It appears to show considerable insider knowledge and deliberate shifting of the route at considerable cost to the Country and in order to ‘protect’
a wealthy suburb. I would be angered if it had been moved to my back yard.
Obviously the councillors et al were self laudatory and excited and said to much.
Their statements were very revealing as to honesty, integrity and the means by which HS2 has been planned.
One mistake is unfortunate but three and with difference content and context stretches and kinks credulity.
NOt in my back yard if you are powerful, rich and influential (and that is just the councillors)
Gideon Osborne denied his involvement.
I have given the Http and the relevant text should it disappear.
This matter is significant in terms of our ability to trust; either one side or both sides have now obfuscated the truth and at stake is the process whereby HS2 has been imposed on a population and the grounds for the route.
It was reported in other news sources that Michael Jones, the leader of Cheshire East council, issued a press release saying: “Your MPs George Osborne, Edward Timpson and I, have fought hard to keep the line away from Knutsford and Tatton, which we have been successful in achieving.”
The article below published locally has more detail and more comment from other voices including the Mayor that seemingly support the original version of events.
It seems very confident and self laudatory .
Was this history retrospectively altered. It would be beyond simple embarassment if correct .
The statements about some having to suffer but political power contributing to great public extra cost and the partial handling in this matter is of national importance in the setting of this argument.
Note the comment of the Mayor.
The proposed high-speed rail route misses the Wilmslow countryside but supporters say the town can still reap the benefits of the link.
The government has unveiled phase two of HS2 to build a fast rail route from Birmingham to Manchester and Leeds, which follows phase one between London and Birmingham.
It had been thought the new line – part of a £32.7bn project – could run near Wilmslow and Alderley Edge, blighting land and property for decades.
But after discussions between councillors, Cheshire East leader Michael Jones and Chancellor and Tatton MP George Osborne, the route will cut through land nearer Tatton Park and Knutsford, touching the Tatton constituency to the west.
The nearest station to Wilmslow will be at Manchester Airport, where there will be an interchange by the M56 between Warburton Green and Davenport Green. Passengers should get from the airport to London in less than an hour.
Another station will be built alongside Piccadilly. Others will be at East Midlands, Sheffield and Leeds.
Mr Osborne said the line would be an ‘engine for growth’, easing overcrowding and creating tens of thousands of jobs – but conceded there would be outrage in affected areas.
David Lewis, of campaign group Residents Of Wilmslow, said: “In a sense we can breathe a sigh of relief, but there’s a great swathe of countryside that will be affected.”
Another countryside campaigner said: “We have vast housing and commercial development projects in the near future, with Airport City and the new logistics site.
“Cheshire East will be submerged in a blanket of industrialised concrete – to save 45-60 minutes on a train.”
Clive Bassil, of Wilmslow Trust, agreed multiple developments around Wilmslow and Manchester Airport will have drastic consequences.
He said: “When taken with the 2,500 houses at Handforth, 950 at Woodford and 400 in Wilmslow, let alone the work on the A556 and the Airport Relief Road, there is cause for concern.”
Coun George Walton, mayor, said the council worked with the chancellor to minimise impact. He said: “The line has to come north and we support that for economic growth and jobs, but someone somewhere has to be affected.”
The proposed route will take the new line beneath Crewe with a link to the West Coast Main Line, to reduce travel times to Liverpool.
The council says it will not affect Cheshire East’s key historic towns and tourist assets, such as Tatton Park.
Coun Gary Barton said: “I’m in favour of the line. It stays away from Wilmslow and will be great for the Wilmslow economy, to keep us connected and boost business.”
Consultation starts this year. The Department for Transport will look into fast-tracking it so phase two is completed ahead of the scheduled date of 2032.
When I responded to the phase 1 consultation, they lost my reply. I did not know it was lost until they found it and wrote to me saying ‘sorry we lost it, but now we’ve looked at it and it wouldn’t have made any difference anyway because it’s the same as all the other replies which we haven’t taken any notice of either’.
Ministers are now saying that the route to Birmingham is the result of the biggest consultation ever. They don’t say that they did not take any notice of anything that anyone said. What’s more, they’re telling the people of Church Fenton ‘Don’t worry, the public consultation on routes north of Birmingham will start later this year, and you can have your say before any decision on where the line will run’.
Forgive my cynicism but I do not have any confidence in the consultation process. The word ‘sham’ springs to mind.