Train companies respond to decision on HS2

In response to the decision on High Speed 2, Michael Roberts, Chief Executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) said:

“HS2 is a vote of confidence in the railways and recognition of the vital role the industry has to play in supporting jobs and driving sustainable economic growth.

“HS2 would help to alleviate the capacity crunch on many of our major rail corridors and offer the prospect of shorter journey times between London and other major English cities.

“It would also allow for faster and more frequent local services in areas between London and Birmingham, as space is freed up on existing lines.

“By deploying the best of British design and engineering in the construction of the high speed line in Kent we struck the right balance between national and local interest – we can do the same again with HS2.”

Sarah Lee, Head of Policy for the Countryside Alliance, said:                                                                 

“The Countryside Alliance remains gravely concerned that no significant evaluation of the impact of High Speed Rail 2 on the countryside, its communities and wildlife has been properly undertaken or acknowledged.

“While we welcome some of the concessions that have been made by the Government – including noise reduction measures and longer tunnels – we are dubious as to whether this will make any overall difference to the environmental impact of the rail line, which will still consume huge amounts of energy and damage many important sites for wildlife.

“Equally these last-minute changes, as with the route north of Birmingham, have also not been put forward for public consultation and therefore risk huge public and stakeholder backlash.

“The Alliance calls on the Government to undertake these assessments and consultations as a matter of urgency, before any further progression is made on this project.”


  1. Part of the environmental discussion should be the effect of the ever filling roads and the overall reduction is harmful emissions compared to road widening or the removal of cars from the very congested M1, M6, M40 and other majors roads around these cities.

  2. Government and HS2 Ltd.need to get away from the “London to Birmingham in 45 minutes” mantra- – HS2 is about SO much more than the journey time between England’s two biggest cities. Of course you need to understand how railways work and grasp the concepts of headway, track speed limitations imposed by Victorian-era route alignment, etc – things that will have passed by many of the NIMBYs.


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