In The Press » Jan 10, 2012 - Northamptonshire UKIP MEP Derek Clark says HS2 a waste of money
MEP slams HS2 decision
'...Northamptonshire UKIP MEP Derek Clark says HS2 a waste of money ...'
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UK Independence Party
From the Office of Derek Clark, MEP, East Midlands
Rowan House, 23 Billing Road, Northampton NN1 5AT
Tel: 01604 620064 Fax: 01604 636002
Jan 10, 2012
A county MEP has slammed the decision to build a £32b high speed rail link.
The HS2 project will cut through villages and countryside in south Northamptonshire after the Government backed the go-ahead for the controversial scheme.
But Northamptonshire UKIP MEP Derek Clark said he was concerned about the vast cost to the taxpayer.
He said: "I live in Northamptonshire, through which the first stage of HS2, London to Birmingham, will pass. The claim it will shave 33 minutes off the London to Birmingham time is an illusion. It is a complete waste of money.
"Currently, the fastest train, Euston to Birmingham, takes 82 minutes but it stops three times. Non-stop that would be about 76 minutes taking you right into Birmingham at New Street Station.
"HS2 goes to a new station 10 minutes away from there. So the claimed journey of 49 minutes by HS2 becomes effectively 59 minutes, saving only 17 minutes against a non-stop on existing track.
"It is claimed for HS2 that we must compete with Europe with its high speed trains. These other countries are much bigger, so to compete with us they need to cover distances between their capitals and other cities more quickly. "
"When you challenge the Secretary of State and other supporters of HS2 you get the comment, 'but it isn't just London to Birmingham it's going to be London right through to the North of England'.
"To which the reply is, 'So why do they keep on talking about HS2 in terms of London to Birmingham and if it is going to stop at Birmingham, even when the route to the North is up and running, then my times are still valid'."
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