HS2 Select committee fails to listen and challenge the promoters

Lord Berkeley

Euston Express is disappointed that the Commons Select committee chose to ignore the inaccurate evidence given by HS2 about our Euston Express scheme.  E Ex puts all HS2 and West Coast Main Line trains onto the WCML tracks from Queens Park inwards and avoids the high cost, massive disruption and demolition to streets to the west of the line and at Euston itself.  Euston Express, supported by a number of rail professionals, believes it that the existing station can be adapted to accommodate all these trains without taking additional land, except at the south end where the tracks would be extended towards Euston Road, with a passenger deck above all platforms.

It was disappointing that the Committee chose to rely on HS2 views without properly considering challenges to their assertions.  For example, for Euston Express:

HS2 stated that GC (continental gauge) lines were a requirement all the way into Euston, but then admitted that this was incorrect.

They stated that Euston Express scheme was more expensive than HS2’s own AP3 scheme at Euston, but then could not (and still cannot) substantiate this with any significant evidence on the station scheme.

The Committee, in its Report para 222, states that E Ex ‘would require high levels of night time construction in a residential area’, whilst appearing to ignore the very much greater disruption, no doubt day and night, from the HS2 scheme from demolishing many properties to the west of the station and approaches, around 2 m tonnes of excavations to be removed by up to 1000 trucks a day for three years.

For Euston Express there is more discussions to be had – with other parts of Network Rail, DfT and TfL since we do believe that a feasible scheme can be built and operated with much less aggravation and costing billions less than the 20 years’ construction nightmare that is the current HS2 proposal.

Sadly, I conclude that the Committee in many instances failed to give proper time to hearing evidence and challenging the promoter.  Let us hope that the Lords Select committee behaves better!

HS2 Commons Committee Final report published 22 February 2016:


Euston Express is very grateful for all the support and advice received from Jonathan Roberts of JRC consultants and other professionals in preparing its scheme.

6 comments for “HS2 Select committee fails to listen and challenge the promoters

  1. Ann
    23/02/2016 at 6:54 pm

    It would appear that the select committee has ignored world experts in engineering, tunnel construction and hydrogeology, and has instead taken the misleading information presented by HS2 as definitive. They have completely ignored the value of, and importance of the Chilterns AONB. A reasonable approach now might be to collate those inaccurate and misleading information from HS2, and consider how to use this material. Select committees may listen, but maybe they do not hear.

  2. MilesJSD
    23/02/2016 at 8:24 pm

    Clearly the House of Commons Select Committee is Not Fit for Purpose – it is falling far far short.
    {This is also because of its higher-strategic failure to be adequately-tackling the Civilisationally Longest-Term Strategicly Sustainworthying Predicament; and other such causative background Problems}.

    Assuming for a moment that you-and-we-public,
    and the constitutional-enforcement-powers in-between,
    are actually inter-democraticly-communicating 24/7 ‘co-constructively’;
    we are suddenly faced with a Duty-Task
    and to be “giving-an-account-of-our-stewardship[s]” :

    “How can we, between us if not by one of us alone, cause such Committees to keep coming up to being all-round Fit-for-Purpose?
    and to remain maintaining that Fitness, 24/7/52/Permanently ?”

  3. 03/03/2016 at 3:28 pm

    Oh, that we could revisit the UK Ultraspeed proposal. They recommended terminals at Stratford and Heathrow. If a central London terminal was deemed necessary, they proposed fitting in a Maglev terminal between St. Pancras and Kings Cross. If the government had given the go ahead then, as the guideway is factory built and transported to site, we could already be looking at an up and running and almost complete Glasgow to Heathrow system, via Newcastle and Teesside, crossing the Pennines from Leeds to Manchester, without need for expensive tunnels, and connecting with the capital via the route of the M1, no need to invade the Chiterns. There could have been scope to connect all four London airports, using up spare capacity at Luton, Stansted and Gatwick, without the need for extra runways.

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