Disappointed by tunnel decision
Vow to continue fight for the future
CAMPAIGNERS and residents of Harefield have growing concerns for their “beautiful” village and countryside after the HS2 Select Committee rejected proposals for a tunnel extension through to the Colne Valley.
Two features of the area, Hillingdon Outdoor Activity Centre (HOAC) and Harefield Marina, will be affected by the HS2 project.
HOAC would be “obliterated” if HS2 goes ahead, said an “extremely disappointed” Jeff Creak, principal of (HOAC).
He said: “It shows the lack of any value that is put on children’s education. The idea that building a train for businessmen to save 10 minutes but at the same time obliterating the opportunities for young people doesn’t sound like a good bargain to me.”
Mr Creak is hoping for HS2 Ltd to come back with a viable option for a new site, after their suggestion of moving the centre to a lake in Denham, which is half the size, and doesn’t “suit sailing at all”.
He added: “We’re still working on other angles but unless something new comes out the future is not looking good.”
Harefield Marina will lose some of its moorings but is keen to keep the business up and running, whatever the outcome of HS2.
Mike Musk, founder of Harefield Marina, is also “very disappointed”.
He said: “I find
it remarkable that the chair of the select committee rejected Hillingdon council‘s petition as I thought a very good case was put up.
“It surprises me that the committee are accepting figures about the difference in cost from people that don’t seem to be able to handle figures too well.
“There’ll be some effect but we’ll work to mitigate that. We wanted to see it tunnelled or to not happen at all. I’d rather the money be saved and it go to better use.”
Doreen McIntyre, of Harefield Against HS2, will be “continuing the fight”.
She said: “As far as we’re concerned, the game is still very much on. The House of Lords process comes round in a year so that option remains open.
“In the meantime, we have to keep asking questions. The cost of this project hasn’t gone away, nothing has changed. Nothing has increased the business case for HS2 as a whole so I think we could go back and ask: What’s the case for HS2?”
n CAMPAIGN: Members of the group fighting to save Harefield Marina. Left, Doreen McIntyre
Photos by Katie Lamb www.buyaphototms.co.uk WL154403
n PROTEST: Graham Adams and Sarah Brooks