Latest Rail News

21.06.17

Queen confirms commitment to bring forward HS2 phase 2 bill

The second phase of HS2 received a notable mention in today’s Queen’s Speech during the State Opening of Parliament ceremony.

In her speech, the Queen confirmed that a new bill for the project “will be brought forward to deliver the next phase of high-speed rail”.

As expected, she did not reveal any further details about when the bill would be introduced in the House of Commons. Pete Brunskill, Transport for the North’s rail stakeholder manager, told RTM last year that the plan was to draft the phase 2a hybrid bill, which covers the Birmingham to Crewe leg, in September ahead of a final submission in 2019.

Despite the turbulence surrounding the high-speed project, phase 1 was given royal assent in Parliament early this year, meaning work on the long-awaited network can now officially go ahead.

The speech, which took place at 11.30am today, was already blasted by industry bodies who criticised the lack of information around other important rail initiatives.

Darren Caplan, CEO of the Railway Industry Association, said the commitment to transport infrastructure and HS2 legislation was welcome, but voiced concern “about the lack of commitment to Crossrail 2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail (or HS3)”.

“Rail infrastructure needs to be improved throughout the whole of the UK and major schemes like these provide wider benefits not just to those parts of the country they serve, but also to the national economy; and they are essential to helping Britain become Brexit-ready in the years to come,” said Caplan. “We urge the government to give a green light to both Crossrail 2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail as infrastructure projects crucial to the future success of UK plc, and to do this quickly.”

(Top image c. PA Images)

Comments

Tony   21/06/2017 at 16:14

Rothchild noise and destruction project nothing more or less!.

Richard   22/06/2017 at 00:05

Excellent news! An opportunity to actually move our Railways from the 19th Century to the 21st, sadly long after most other Countries!

Lutz   22/06/2017 at 07:39

Only for phase 2a, so Phase 2b will not be brought to Parliament until after 2020. No mention of HS3, but then it is not even mentioned, by any of it's aliases (as far as I can see) in the report issues by TfL in the last few days.

Chrism   24/06/2017 at 02:40

Lutz, phase 2b legislation will be introduced (as planned) in the period covered by the next queens speech - the latter half of 2019. Royal assent is expected in 2023. It is expected that any junctions required between HS2 and NPR will be covered by this legislation. I agree with Richard, at last we are getting a modern railway system rather than more tinkering with our 19th century infrastructure. We are however more than two decades behind other continental railway networks. I expect historians will judge that Britain's inability to invest in new railways until there was a crisis in capacity cost the country dearly.

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