Who says HS2 is ‘hoovering up’ all the funding?

Today brings great news for UK railways with the announcement that more than £9 billion is being spent on upgrades across England and Wales.

The investment will deliver faster journey times, more reliable services and capacity for 140,000 extra daily commutes by train, according to the Department for Transport.

The DfT press release says: The full £9.4bn programme of improvements to the rail network published today will meet the needs of intercity passengers, commuters and freight up to the end of this decade while the Government continues to work on High Speed 2 to deliver rail capacity for the British economy in the decades to come.

Click here for full details of the HLOS (High Level Output Specification).

In the Midlands the Chase Line between Walsall and Rugeley is to be electrified, a scheme Centro has calculated is worth £113 million to the West Midlands economy and will generate 1,370 jobs.

This is a key project for Centro and one it lobbied hard to be included for funding in this period.

The Leamington Spa-Coventry-Nuneaton line will also be electrified while the Birmingham-Tamworth line will be upgraded with improved signalling.

The Leamington Spa-Coventry-Nuneaton line will form part of an ‘Electric Spine’ high capacity passenger and freight electrified corridor.

This will run from the south coast through Oxford, Bedford and via the Midland Main Line to the East Midlands and South Yorkshire, with a link from Oxford to the West Coast Main Line via Leamington- Coventry-Nuneaton.

You can read more about this in Centro’s news release here.

On Friday a number of critics of HS2 said high speed rail would take away all funding from the classic network. One even said HS2 was ‘hoovering up’ all the funding.

Today’s news has proved this is simply not the case.

This entry was posted in Economic, West Midlands and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Who says HS2 is ‘hoovering up’ all the funding?

  1. Chris Neville-Smith says:

    Don’t worry, the outrage has now moved on to the idea that investment in ANY kind of rail project being bad, because apparently all railways, not just HS2, are for rich men. I have to say none of the people I see on the Durham-Newcastle commute look terribly affluent, but the logic is presumably that this non-existent cabal of rich businessmen who form the entire customer base of the railways means that the railways must not receive any investment whatsoever. And if you’re a train passenger who’s not a rich businessman that’s your problem.

    Have to say, it only fuels my suspicion that a lot of HS2 antis are not so much anti-HSR, but anti-railway completely.

    • gohs2 says:

      Thanks for commenting. Yes, it’s certainly true that the doubling of passengers in a decade in the West Midlands isn’t solely down to men in pinstripe suits!
      Many opponents have been keen to make environmental arguments and there is nothing wrong with that as long as they’re not selective. For example we are particularly keen to use released capacity to increase freight (one freight train can replace 50-60 lorries) but this is often ignored.
      We could also run many more local and regional services and protect existing services that Network Rail say would be lost with alternatives such as 51M.
      Also, 95% of spoil was recycled with HS1, but this was roundly dismissed as irrelevant by opponents and commentators who said it was another railway and invalid. However, opponents were quick to attack using economic criticism of HS1!
      A number of opponents want to stop HS2 but do not accept other credible alternatives (or maybe not so credible) would have to be found as our population grows and demand for travel increases. For example, Andrea Leadsom MP suggested a new line should be built from MK to London. And UKIP wanted a non-stop Birmingham-London shuttle. HS2 opponents are very quiet on both of these…..

  2. charlesnorrie says:

    With the £9B announcement HS2 is dead.

    Now we gan go forward and plan the next big C21 railway, the underground vactrain-maglev line capable of 5000 kph. A real C21 challenge rather than a mid c20 soup up of a c19 idea!

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