Midlands Engine

18.07.19

HS2 Director says on schedule to get Royal Assent 'by Christmas'

An HS2 Director told delegates at the innovative TransCityRail Midlands event at The Vox Conference Centre in Birmingham that the multi-billion transformation project was “on schedule to get Royal Assent for the 2A phase by Christmas.”

Lorna Pimlott, Director of Sponsorship & Policy, Phase 2, HS2 Ltd, also used a speech at the industry-leading conference to identify procurement opportunities for suppliers and reinforce the clear message that HS2 was firmly on track.

The rail executive pointed to the fact Parliamentarians across all sides of the political divide had backed the move towards Royal Assent for HS2 and said the scheme had “all-party support.”

The HS2 Director told the audience not to “believe everything you see or read in the press,” and focussed on the recent successful parliamentary vote which smoothed the way for the project to develop.

She said: “We have spent a great deal of time since 2017 since Phase One got Royal Assent through parliament to ensure that what we are delivering is value for money for the public purse - and making sure we get it right again first time.

“We hope to obtain Notice to Proceed at the end of this year. That means the Department of Transport is comfortable we are in a position to appoint our main works civil contracts.”

She also described HS2 as: “the first chance the UK has to rebalance the economy between the south-east and the north…linking up new economies like the Midlands Engine, Northern Powerhouse, and Scotland.

“Fingers crossed; we are actually on schedule to get our Royal Assent for the 2A phase by Christmas.”

The Director of Sponsorship & Policy, Phase 2, HS2 Ltd, also encouraged the sector to consider supply options which will be available on a truly massive scale as the project develops towards a new phase.

She added: “I can’t stress enough there a phenomenal amount of opportunities. Do come and approach us if there are areas where you would like to work with us.

“We have 250 live sites already and for the company it feels like we are cracking on with this. We’ve got over 9,000 individuals working on Hs2 in the country – it’s a significant boost to the workforce in the UK.

“There are lots of opportunities, whether it is specialist steel work, concrete, or other aspects so get in touch.”

 

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