Council campaign against proposed HS2 rail link
A COUNCIL is campaigning against the proposed HS2 high speed rail link between Crewe and London.
Mottram St Andrew Parish Council says the London to Manchester high speed rail line will have an adverse affect on people in the area who currently travel to the capital from stations around Macclesfield and Wilmslow.
It says that rather than reduce journey times, commuters will be forced to travel further to HS2 stations, thus negating the quicker journey time the train will deliver.
Bill Pilkington is the chairman of the council and has 50 years experience designing railways in the UK as an engineer for British Rail.
Bill said: “Under the current proposals all Manchester to London express services will be diverted onto the new HS2 route to free up extra capacity on the existing West Coast Main Line for additional freight and commuter services.
“This will make it very difficult to operate express services on the existing line, which means people wanting to travel on an express service to London will be required to go to either the airport or the new station at Crewe to board a HS2 service.
“Whilst the train journey time will be quicker this will be negated by the additional time required to drive to a HS2 station.
“We also believe this will mean that future development and businesses will locate or relocate adjacent to a HS2 station. Towns that do not have a HS2 station will suffer.”
Bill has met with the Transport Minister, Baroness Kramer, to talk about the campaign.
He added: “We made this point in our response to Cheshire East’s Local Plan consultation and attended the Inspector’s Consultation to reinforce it.
“We have also raised our concerns at various HS2 meetings and took the issue up with MP David Rutley.”
“We believe that it is possible to provide both Macclesfield and Wilmslow with a HS2 compatible service – from Wilmslow by operating over the existing line to Crewe, and from Macclesfield by constructing a new rail link. Two options have been suggested but unfortunately neither are being examined by the HS2 development team at the moment as far as we know.”
The matter is due to be discussed at the parish council’s next meeting, which will take place on Monday, January 19 at the village hall’s clubroom at 6.30pm.
●● Prestbury Parish Council members Ron Taylor, clerk, Bill Pilkington, chairman and Don Hatch, vice-chairman.
●● Alex Romei hands the cheque to the hospice’s fundraising officer Helena Gowler