Written evidence from I M Williams (HSR
I enclose comments relating to the proposals for
HS2 together with a suggestion for an alternative route running
from just south of Middleton to just north of Lichfield.
It is my opinion that, on balance, all parts of Britain
need a High Speed Train service. Moreover, that it should have
been built years ago.
Major works such as these will always require large
budgets and such is the nature of public works that there will
always be other demands on the funds available.
If the decision to proceed had been taken many years
ago, however, it is possible that far more goods would be transported
by rail thereby greatly reducing the number of heavy goods lorries
on our motorways. The consequence of the huge numbers of these
lorries, is the need to keep spending, additionally large amounts,
on the maintenance of our motorways and also further large sums
expanding their width and numbers.
Had we already built the railway, then as a result
there would, probably, have been less demand for ever more motorway
capacity, which would have offset the cost of building a High
Speed rail system in the first place. Additionally had the system
been built earlier there would, probably, have been a significantly
smaller number of dwellings involved which limit the choice of
route or add to the cost of compensation.
As it is, I believe it essential that we finally
bite the bullet, in the interests of the country's commercial
future, and press on with the building of the Nation's High Speed
I understand that, in this densely populated country,
it will cause great inconvenience to many. Proportionately, however,
they are a small minority of the population, and providing they
reeive fair and equitable compensation, I would hope those having
to give up their homes and businesses understand that it is for
the greater good of the Nation.
The cost of the project is enormous (but would be
even more if postponed again) and, as always for a project of
this nature and magnitude, there are experts for each side who
are able to argue the case both for and against the scheme. They
are able to "prove" that on the one hand it will be
a boon but put an equally strong case, on the other, that it is
This, as always, leave the majority of us, as laymen,
little the wiser and having to rely on our "gut feeling".
In my case, as I mention above, I believe it will
be a benefit to our country's trade, be it manufacturing or tourist,
and might even product savings elsewhere (eg less motorway expansion).
I enclose some maps showing my alternative route
and other ideas together with an explanation of why I think this
route would be better.
9 Enclosures not printed Back