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.”