HS2: Buckinghamshire

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:12 pm on 29th April 2019.

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Photo of Alec Shelbrooke Alec Shelbrooke Conservative, Elmet and Rothwell 5:12 pm, 29th April 2019

I have always supported this project—it will come through my constituency, but the benefits to my constituency will be huge in terms of jobs created, the rolling stock depot and various other aspects—but there is a problem. We were supposed to vote on phase 2b of the route in 2019, but that has been pushed back and back. My constituents near to the route are getting no answers or timeline and are having to battle tooth and nail to get compensation from HS2. I urge my hon. Friend to tell HS2 that its community engagement does not do what it says on the tin. I have met HS2 several times and pointed out areas of the route that need improvement, and every time I have another meeting, it is like the last one never happened. More importantly, in meetings with my constituents, it is also like the last one never happened.

There are two problems that I think my hon. Friend needs to address. First, the time overrun is costing money, and secondly, the engagement with my constituents is not working properly. Can we learn the lessons from what is going on with phase 1—I hope that that keeps me in order, Mr Speaker—to ensure that we do not go through this process again when we reach phase 2?