NABO has made a brief response to the HS2 Phase Two proposed line of route consultation. This consultation seeks views on the proposed high speed rail route from the West Midlands to Manchester, Leeds and beyond, as well as on the sustainability impacts of the proposed line of route.
The consultation closes on Friday 31st January 2014. You can see the documents and response personally at this link www.hs2.org.uk/route-consultation
There are many national and local issues involved, well beyond the normal activities of a boating organsiation.
The main ones highlighted for the NABO response have been
Support for the canal societies who are threatened with obstruction to their route.
Noise abatement for track near or crossing the canals
The multiple crossing of the Trent and Mersey north of Fradley Junction. (This is really a Phase One issue as the offending track involved is a loop line to the existing West Coast Main line at Stafford.)
All boaters with local knowledge are encouraged to make a personal response. This can be readily done on line at the link above.
The NABO response is here.
In addition the HS2 Phase One Hybrid Bill is moving towards its second reading. HS2 Ltd on behalf of the Department for Transport submitted this Bill to Parliament on 25 November 2013 – the High Speed Rail (London – West Midlands) Bill. The Bill will potentially grant the powers necessary to construct and operate Phase One of HS2 between London and the West Midlands.
The details can be seen here: www.hs2.org.uk/hs2-phase-one-hybrid-bill/hybrid-bill
After (a successful) Second Reading, the House will have agreed to a high speed railway between London and the West Midlands, and the principle of the Bill can no longer be opposed. However, it is possible to submit a petition opposing any particular detail of the Bill (for example details of the route) if an individual, group of individuals, or organisation can demonstrate that they are directly and specially affected.
Campaign groups which are not composed of individuals who are directly and specially affected are unable to petition. They can however lobby Members of Parliament separately from the petitioning process.
NABO will not be submitting a petition. Boaters who have particular local issues should lobby their MPS.