PEERS REJECT FURTHER MAJOR CHANGES FOR HS2
Mitigation suggestions turned down by House of Lords
ANTI-HS2 politicians have slammed the findings published by the House of Lords Select Committee in its latest report.
Chesham and Amersham MP Cheryl Gillan and independent Chiltern District Councillor for Great Missenden Seb Berry have expressed their dismay that the House of Lords HS2 Select Committee Special Report plans for HS2 did not recommend any further large-scale changes.
The 130-page report, published in December, recommended against a further extension to the Chilterns tunnel, the movement of the haul road at Great Missenden, and an independent review of tunnel costings.
Mrs Gillan said: “I was disappointed that no significant changes were recommended by the committee for the constituency and the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), despite my best efforts and those of my dedicated constituents and local authorities.
“The communities of Great Missenden, South Heath and Wendover remain heavily affected, and it is a shame that this archaic and outdated legislative system meant that further alterations could not be made, including no additional provisions.”
Mr Berry said: “Predictably, the report is very dismissive of legitimate local objections.
“This comes on top of a deeply flawed petition process.
“Tory ministers will no doubt be delighted that their plans to push on with plonking the tunnel portal in the protected AONB at South Heath, with all of the misery that will bring to local people, has been given the green light again by the committee.”
Transport minister Andrew Jones said: “I welcome the report from the Lords Select Committee, and thank members for their significant time and efforts over the course of the hearings.
“We will consider carefully the recommendations in the report and respond shortly.
“I also recognise the demands this process has placed on petitioners.
“We have listened to those affected by the scheme and in many cases we have been able to put in place arrangements to address their con- cerns. This report marks another significant step towards getting spades in the ground for this transformational project.”
Still on track: HS2 locations across Bucks include Leather Lane, The Lee