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Cheshire East Council say they are “disappointed” the Government has removed “safeguarding” along the axed HS2 Phase 2a route into South Cheshire.

The Dept of Transport announced last week safeguarding would be lifted, which means land acquired as part of the planned route is no longer protected and could now be sold or potentially developed for other projects.

Transport Minister Mark Harper said that “by lifting safeguarding, the government provides certainty to people along the former route of HS2 and makes development easier, as HS2 Ltd will no longer object to proposed development in the area to which the safeguarding directions had applied”.

However, Cllr Craig Browne, deputy leader of Cheshire East Council and chair of its highways and transport committee, said the council was “disappointed that the Government has taken the steps to remove the safeguarding for Phase 2a of HS2”.

Cheshire East is already reeling from the decision to axe Phase 2a, which they say will see them lose £8 million invested in the project.

Cllr Browne added: “There remain some uncertainties around what services will run on the West Coast Main Line north of Birmingham and therefore the key infrastructure that will be required – such as whether or not there will be investment at Crewe station to enable the longer 400m HS2 services to split and join at Crewe.

“The removal of the safeguarding for Phase 2a does not necessarily mean that any land already acquired by HS2 will be immediately sold, and the council will be requesting that Government publishes further details of the land sale process as soon as possible.

“I recognise this news will undoubtedly cause concerns for residents and businesses who may have land interests that are affected by this announcement.

“While Government has said that it is writing to the owners of properties affected by this update explaining what these changes mean to them, I would like to remind them that the HS2 helpdesk remains available to them.

“The council continues to engage with Government to seek to secure a fair and equitable compensation and investment deal for Cheshire East following the cancellation of HS2 north of Birmingham.”

Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, Connor Naismith said: “The decision to end safeguarding on this land is to ‘salt the earth’, making it almost impossible for a future government to reinstate the project in its original form”.

“Crewe was a key player in the development of HS2 with the local economy projected to benefit hugely both throughout the construction phase and through future business development.

“This once again demonstrates the government’s short-sighted, spiteful attitude towards much needed infrastructure in the north and levelling up in Crewe and Nantwich.

“This project was essential for local economic growth and prosperity, having been estimated to generate £750m and 5,000 new jobs annually for Crewe.”

To contact the HS2 helpdesk:
Freephone: 08081 434 434
Minicom: 08081 456 472
Email: [email protected]

One Comment

  1. The Toilet have zero intention of level up in the north of England. HS2 being cancelled was not a surprise. The red wall seats have been taken for a “ride”:. I understand Andy Burnham is exploring if private funding can bridge the gap between Birminghaand Manchester. Hopefully it will happen it annoys me when people believe the only benefit of HS2 was time saved. It’s much , much more than this . The divide between the north and south gets ever wider.

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