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High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:13 pm on 26th June 2013.

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Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Shadow Secretary of State for Transport 3:13 pm, 26th June 2013

My goodness, I find myself in total agreement with the hon. Gentleman.

Despite the importance of this project, there has been a real lack of drive from Ministers—I am not necessarily talking about the Secretary of State—in taking the decisions and delivering the action needed to make it a reality. The former Labour Transport Secretary, Lord Adonis, set up HS2 Ltd as long ago as 2009. By August of the same year, he had already confirmed plans for a new north-south rail line because he was a high-speed Secretary of State. Nothing has moved anywhere near as fast at the Department for Transport since he left, except the revolving door that has meant I am facing my third Transport Secretary since the election. I hope very much that the Government reshuffle that is rumoured to be on the cards does not deliver yet another change. I am sure that the right hon. Gentleman will agree with me on that.