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Bucks' councils call for HS2 work to stop

Final financial and design plans for the route haven't been signed off yet.

Published by Dan Gooding at 1:13pm 25th April 2019. 3-minute read.

Bucks' councils call for HS2 work to stop

Buckinghamshire's councils are asking the government to stop HS2 work immediately.

AVDC, Chiltern, South Bucks and now the County Council have decided to call for work underway here to be halted.

The project hasn't actually been given a final sign-off in terms of costs and design.

As required by the Department of Transport, a Notice to Proceed should not be given until the management capability, affordability of contracts and robustness of the revised business case have all been fully proven and approved.

The early HS2 works are already causing devastation across the county from Calvert in the north, through Great Missenden and down into the Colne Valley.

There are major utilities works, roadworks, ground investigation, vegetation removal and netting of hedgerows all happening now.

HS2 Crime Scene 3
Protesters have been out in Steeple Claydon

This is all in spite of it being widely reported that the official Notice to Proceed for the project has been pushed back towards the end of the year.

In a joint statement, Council Leaders said there was absolutely no justification why the County's residents should suffer significant disruption and long term environmental destruction while things remain so unclear.

They say it's massively disruptive to have HS2 contractors trampling all over the County doing preparatory work without the final scheme details even being known.

Some of the current work is also extremely controversial and is creating significant issues locally.

As a result, Councils also want HS2 Ltd to significantly improve the effectiveness of its community engagement with all those impacted by the line.

The Leaders add that if the Crossrail scheme is anything to go by, then it is clear that HS2 is definitely far from on time and on budget.

As a result, the councils will be asking for a proper review to be undertaken before any further taxpayer funding is committed.

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