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Over 1,000 turn out for anti-HS2 event in Bucks

Wildlife presenter Chris Packham was part of the 'Stand for the Trees' event in Denham.

Published by Dan Gooding at 9:21am 30th December 2019. 3-minute read.

Over 1,000 turn out for anti-HS2 event in Bucks

Celebrities and campaigners turned out to 'stand for the trees' in Buckinghamshire over the weekend.

Around 1300 people turned out from all over the country at Denham Country park to join Chris Packham and campaigners to
Stand for the Trees and take a walk for Wildlife and Water through the Colne Valley.

HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham
HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham
Campaigners are calling on the government to #RethinkHS2

The event, organised by Extinction Rebellion, Stop HS2 and Save the Colne Valley Wildlife Protection Group was aimed at telling the truth about the high speed rail project and drawing attention to the plight of the water supply of some 3.2 Million Affinity Water Customers and the 'devastating loss of wildlife and habitat at the hands of HS2' should the project go ahead.

The route enabled walkers to see much of the vegetation and trees already cleared to make way for a temporary road through Denham Country Park and to see how much more will be lost when work begins again in the New Year.

Many where shocked to see that work on the HS2 project had not stopped pending the results of the Oakervee Review as many people were led to believe, and were stunned that the beautiful Local Nature Reserve would be so transfigured by mere preparatory works.

HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham

The walk culminated outside the Blackford Pumping Station where walkers joined hands in a show of solidarity against the project. Blackford is where Affinity Water draw from to supply Buckinghamshire and 22% of London with drinking water and it is being put at significant risk by HS2.

HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham
HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham

Over 100 irreplaceable ancient woodlands are threatened by HS2, the cmapaigners say, as well as hundreds of other precious wildlife sites.

Even by HS2's own projections, the project won’t be carbon neutral for at least 120 years.

What's more, the groups say, HS2 will deliver a huge increase in airport passenger numbers to Birmingham, East Midlands, Manchester and Leeds, thereby enabling large-scale airport expansion.

They add that HS2 is incompatible with the Climate and Ecological Emergency declared by Parliament and incompatible with the UK Government's Net Zero emissions goal.

On 22nd December, Chris Packham, on behalf of the #RethinkHS2 alliance of environmental organisations, Extinction Rebellion, and their 5 million members, presented a petition to number 10 Downing Street calling on the government to #ReThinkHS2.

HS2 Stand for the Trees in Denham

Chris Packham describes the threat of HS2 as:

“Catastrophic … the largest deforestation process that we’ve undertaken in the UK since the first world war, at a time when we know we should be reforesting the environment, not taking it down.

"The wildlife that we’ve got, we should be fighting tooth and nail to protect.

"These cathedrals of biodiversity cannot be replaced.

"You can rebuild Notre Dame and it will look pretty much the same, but if you cut these woods down you cannot rebuild them by sticking in a few saplings. Let’s stand for the trees!”

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