Bucks County Council unanimously passes motion calling for halt to HS2 enabling works

Bucks County Council has this lunchtime (Thursday) unanimously passed a motion calling for HS2 to stop its works in the county.

Thursday, 25th April 2019, 1:56 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th April 2019, 2:13 pm
HS2 library image

The county council joins Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern District and South Bucks District councils in backing a motion calling for HS2 works to be halted.

The motion, which was proposed by Buckingham councillor Charlie Clare, and seconded by Grendon Underwood councillor Angela Macpherson was unanimously supported by councillors from all the political parties.

The motion itself reads: "This council proposes that the leader should write to Government to request that all enabling works for HS2 in Buckinghamshire should be paused until the notice to proceed to main works contractors has been approved.

"As required by the Department of Transport, notice to proceed should not be given until management capability, affordability of contracts and robustness of revised business case have all been proven.

"We see no reason why the county should suffer significant disruption and long term environmental destruction until detailed design and cost has been approved.

"We also ask that HS2 Ltd significantly improves the effectiveness of its community engagement with those impacted by the line."

During a lengthy debate lasting more than an hour, councillors were united in their condemnation of HS2.

Speaking this morning, council leader Martin Tett said: "The Government needs to be brave and radical - it is right to stop this project now.

"There are far better ways to spend this obscene amount of money including linking the north and rolling out ultra high broadband across the country."

Meanwhile, Lib Dem leader Steven Lambert spoke of his concerns about the impact on wildlife saying: "You can’t just replant historic woodland."

Lib Dem councillor Niknam Hussain added: "The Government has a golden chance to reconsider this white elephant of a project where the budget is spiralling out of control."