HS2 to sur­vey scep­ti­cal pub­lic in £2m poll deal

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Front Page - By Ben Gart­side

THE pub­lic body be­hind the HS2 rail link is spend­ing up to £2m on polling amid wide­spread pub­lic op­po­si­tion to the scheme.

HS2 Ltd has signed a fouryear deal with poll­ster Ip­sos Mori worth as much as £1.96m, which be­gan ear­lier this month.

One in­dus­try in­sider said the deal was among the big­gest they had seen for a sur­vey from a tax­payer-backed or­gan­i­sa­tion. Crit­ics are al­ready fu­ri­ous at the scheme’s spi­ralling £106bn bud­get.

HS2 – which will of­fer ul­tra-fast con­nec­tions be­tween the North and Lon­don – is un­pop­u­lar with swathes of the pub­lic, with 42pc of Bri­tons against it and 32pc in favour, ac­cord­ing to a YouGov sur­vey ear­lier this month.

A spokesman for HS2 said the deal was in line with other con­tracts for polling.

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