High Speed 2 Railway Line

Department for Transport written question – answered on 28th January 2015.

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Photo of Rob Flello Rob Flello Labour, Stoke-on-Trent South

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the impact that HS2 will have on rail freight operations on the West Coast Mainline.

Photo of Claire Perry Claire Perry Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The Department expects that Hs2 will offer a number of opportunities to the freight industry. The released capacity enabled by Hs2 could provide space for an extra 20 West Coast Main Line freight paths per day. Furthermore, the construction itself will provide significant business opportunities, as preliminary analysis suggests that five million cubic metres of excavated material will need to be moved by rail.

The Department understands that there may be concerns about the impact of construction on the existing rail freight network. Works on or near the existing railway during construction, however, will be undertaken in such a way to minimise adverse impacts as far as reasonably practicable. For example, as many works as possible will be undertaken in the normal night time and weekend maintenance periods so as to minimise disruption to passenger and freight services.

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Les Fawcett
Posted on 30 Jan 2015 10:25 pm (Report this annotation)

20 extra paths sounds good but that means 20 less passenger trains for places not served by HS2. HS2's estimates include the £8.3bn that would be saved by CUTTING existing services. HS2 have never published a timetable. Perhaps it would be too embarrassing for them to reveal the damage that HS2 would have on the network. Perhaps we should ask HS2 what their timetable will be, and how on earth reducing services to some places is supposed to be beneficial when demand is rising.