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Monday, June 21, 2021

Business leaders oppose HS2 in open letter

In an open letter to the Daily Telegraph, 21 business leaders have dismissed the HS2 project as an “expensive white elephant” and a “vanity project.”

The letter, published in the newspaper today, is signed by the chief executive of Next, Lord Wolfson and Nigel Lawson who is the former Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Plans for the expensive line have already caused opposition from councils along the route and action groups who say the line will be devastating for the countryside and provide no economic benefit.

The planned high speed line is initially planned to run from Birmingham to London, with scope for it being extended up to Manchester and as far as Scotland to provide a direct, fast link to London.

The letter claims that in the current econmic climate, this project simply cannot be funded at an estimated cost of £32 billion. It claims that the scheme would produce a “train set that only a minority of fortunate passengers will use.”

The Daily Telegraph said that, “other signatories to the letter include Ruth Lea, currently economic adviser to the Adviser, Arbuthnot Banking Group and formerly head of policy at the Institute of Directors and Nivel Vinson, co-founder of the right-wing think tank, the Centre for Policy Studies.”


  1. As today’s FT / Westminster Blog points out, these “21 business leaders” are pretty poor quality compared with the 60 senior business figures who wrote to the FT two weeks ago -nnhttp://blogs.ft.com/westminster/2011/03/high-speed-rail-and-business-my-pro-letter-is-bigger-than-your-anti-letter/

  2. but even these critics are just repeating the same tired arguments which have been refuted many times by simply stating the facts something which they are very thin on the ground with. I wonder what is really behind their anti hs2 stand. nnto be honest i would have thought that a former chancellor and a head of a large company would actually check their facts before signing their names to a letter so full of inaccuracies and half truths !! it is really breally time that hs2 critics put up some facts to support their statements. nnthe point is the line is not going to be built in the current economic climate, and it will take a number of years to build and we can afford the payments !!!! there is no evidence whatsoever to support the assertion that only a few people would use it.nnalso the idea that a 22 metre wide railway is going to destroy massives swathes of countryside is really laughable. and as for any right wing think tanks they would probably close all railways and public transport as they do not seem to see their importance to the economy.


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