‘Dis­trict will not re­ceive any ben­e­fit’

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - FOCUS -

Nick Rose, Chiltern Dis­trict Coun­cil’s lead mem­ber of the cam­paign against HS2: “YOUR read­ers know only too well that Chiltern Dis­trict Coun­cil, its com­mu­nity and en­vi­ron­ment is ad­versely af­fected by the pro­posed HS2 rail­way.

“The safe­guarded route bi­sects the dis­trict and although a sig­nif­i­cant part is in tun­nel, it has con­sid­er­able im­pact.

“We re­main a mem­ber of 51m, the con­sor­tium of lo­cal au­thor­i­ties fight­ing HS2. We have been part of the le­gal chal­lenge against the rail line and are now pe­ti­tion­ing Par­lia­ment against the Hy­brid Bill.

“The pe­ti­tion process is con­cerned with mit­i­ga­tion – less­en­ing the im­pact – and to do this we need to demon­strate why the is­sue is so im­por­tant and the con­se­quences so great, hence our com­mis­sion­ing of this eco­nomic im­pacts re­port. Sev­enty two per cent of our dis­trict is part of the Chilterns Area Of Nat­u­ral Beauty and many of our main set­tle­ments are af­fected by HS2.

“The gov­ern­ment has cho­sen to char­ac­terise the op­po­si­tion in our area as es­sen­tially NIMBY, but we strongly be­lieve this mis­rep­re­sents the eco­nomic im­por­tance and dis­plays a com­plete lack of un­der­stand­ing of the area, which will not re­ceive any ben­e­fit from the pro­posed HS2 route.

“Our area con­trib­utes on­sid­er­able pros­per­ity to he UK, with low nem­ploy­ment, high lev­els f ed­u­ca­tional chieve­ment, low lev­els of epri­va­tion and crime, and ow lev­els of pub­lic pend­ing.

“We asked our on­sul­tants to ad­vise on he eco­nomic im­pact of HS2 on Chiltern Dis­trict ur­ing the con­struc­tion hase and in the years fol­low­ing. Within the re­port, Peter Brett As­so­ciates have shown how and why the area is so suc­cess­ful, how HS2 will un­der­mine this, and how the detri­men­tal im­pacts could be mit­i­gated.

“When we are in­vited to present to the Se­lect Com­mit­tee in Par­lia­ment next year we will be us­ing this re­port as part of our ev­i­dence to try and se­cure the best mit­i­ga­tion for the dis­trict.”

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