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Railways: West Midlands

Volume 489: debated on Friday 20 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) when he expects High Speed Two Ltd. to put forward proposals for a new high speed rail line from the West Midlands to Scotland; (264882)

(2) which (a) cities and (b) counties he has asked High Speed Two Ltd to include in plans for a new high speed rail line between the West Midlands and Scotland.

“High Speed Two”, has been formed to help develop the case for high speed services between London and Scotland.

My noble Friend, Lord Adonis, has written to Sir David Rowlands at “High Speed Two” setting out what the Government expect of the company. A copy of this letter is available in the Libraries of the House.

As a first stage, High Speed Two will report by the end of the year with a proposed route from London to the West Midlands, setting out any necessary options, including for stations. It will also consider the potential for new lines to serve the north of England and Scotland, providing advice on the potential development of a high speed line beyond the West Midlands, at the level of broad “corridors”. We have asked the company to consider in particular the potential for HS2 to extend to the conurbations of Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire, the North East and Scotland.