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Examination of Witnesses

Part of High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:30 pm on 11th July 2013.

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Photo of Caroline Spelman Caroline Spelman Conservative, Meriden 2:30 pm, 11th July 2013

You mentioned Thames tideway a couple of times. I want to return to the theme of whether we have potential constraints on the availability of engineers. You just mentioned demobilising on Crossrail. The tunnel underneath the Thames, at an estimated cost of £4 billion, is another huge infrastructure project in London, but the construction of High Speed 2 would take a team out of London. Are you satisfied that we have enough engineers in the pipeline? Do you think that the Government could do more to ensure that engineers are coming through?

Those who study engineering at university do not always go into engineering. That is a difficult degree—it takes four years and has high A-level requirements—so, in relation to the viability of the project, is there anything that we should bear in mind in terms of potential constraint there?