HS2 “Just a Trophy Project”

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I recently attended a lunch debate with a very serious senior executive from the logistics and transportation business.  As I’m not an expert in that area, I decided to ask him a fairly simple-minded question.

I said: “The UK government proposes to spend £50 billion on a High Speed Rail project.  But many informed commentators seem to think that £80 billion is a more realistic figure, so let’s say €100 billion.  Imagine for a moment that you, Sir, were Transport Minister in the UK, in David Cameron’s government, and that you had a budget of €100 billion to spend on transport infrastructure.  Would you spend it on HS2, or on other projects?”.

There was some wry amusement amongst the audience, but when it died down the expert gave me a serious answer.

HS2 is far too focused on passenger traffic, he said, and seems to ignore freight issues, despite the objective of getting more freight off the road and onto rail.  It also ignores the fact that roads should be a more serious priority, with gridlock on major routes already imposing a huge cost on the British economy, and undermining competitiveness.  My expert said that he would spend much more on roads, and he would focus rail spend on freight capacity, not high-speed passenger traffic.

His closing line said it all: “In my view, HS2 is simply a Trophy Project”.  Or as I like to put it, HS2 is a train set for politicians.

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11 Responses to HS2 “Just a Trophy Project”

  1. Jane Davies says:

    Yep, just about sums it up. As usual a gross mismanagement of taxpayers hard earned. But then this government doesn’t give a rats rear end about other peoples money, it is constantly filling bucket.

  2. Ex-expat Colin says:

    £34B hole in EU accounts today…here we go again:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/11255493/UK-faces-34bn-bill-for-blackhole-in-EU-budget.html

    Farage on Brietbart London about O. Paterson

    Mis management? How about “fill yer boots while you can” !!

    • Jane Davies says:

      “Fill yer boots while you can” sums it up Colin. My blood pressure is through the roof. Where has this money gone and why is there no accountability? The sooner we get out of this disaster of an organisation the better. The UK government is constantly picking on pensioners, the disabled and disbanding the very lifelines that many rely on to help them struggle to to survive, under the excuse that everyone needs to suffer the austerity measures (whilst not touching the mega rich) and yet there is money to give away to this white elephant in Brussels. No….enough is enough. This must end now.

      • Ex-expat Colin says:

        I’m only allowed a pitchfork Jane and thats not enough to relieve these Govenment/EU fools of their assets. However, they need to learn a very hard lesson about how they have managed to screw our countries and peoples therein.

        UKIP cannot do it as thoroughly as I would like, but the common sense resides there with them. The rectification process (if any?) is too slow for me. If you want a long dreary read on proceedings in UK Gov, try this: Fracking and the not Fracking babble or loosely termed a debate. Boots get filled…thats all.

        http://www.theyworkforyou.com/whall/?id=2014-11-25a.195.0&s=climate#g220.0

        I’m just wondering what Ineos is upto with a big wadge of money to turn the Grangemouth (Scotland) loss making massive plant around using UK generated energy. What UK energy?

      • Jane Davies says:

        What UK energy you ask……for a start all the hot air and gas that is generated by incumbents in the houses of parliament. Whenever I look at the site ‘they work for you,’ an oxymoron if ever there was one, I feel the urge to finish the grand plan that Guy Fawkes dreamed up and was unable to finish.

  3. George Morley says:

    I have to agree with Jane Davies and as mentioned on here before the government say that they cannot afford to give pension parity worldwide because it costs too much – like 580 million but then it is just for pensioners who have paid their way and we don’t even need to look at MP’s pay rises to see how immoral this is.

  4. Ex-expat Colin says:

    Railway failures today – a lot !
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/road-and-rail-transport/11257226/Train-fire-causes-major-disruption-for-commuters.html

    And the fares go up in January…for this cr*p. Weather in UK is fairly mild…so?

    • Anne Palmer says:

      The High Speed Train. Part of the EU’s “Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) Policy”

      Today we were told of things that are new
      We are at last to have the H.S 2,
      No matter the cost of this new Train,
      Money for this will be found once again.
      Bridges are crumbling, they are so old,
      Disasters waiting as my tale unfolds,
      Motorways closed as repairs are done,
      ‘Tis the HS2 where the money has gone.

      Our roads are neglected and have been for years,
      Many are the ‘pot-holes’ that cause many tears,
      For money is needed for the High Speed Train,
      Never for Roads to have money again.
      People’s homes that stand in the way,
      Will be demolished, for those folks have no say.
      All to save those thirty minutes of travel,
      But there is more as my tales unravel.

      Lights not lit in the dark of night,
      To save more money, yet it isn’t right
      For in the dimness it is hard to see,
      The hazards that are waiting for you and me.
      Hard shoulders on Motorways into use have come,
      No widening of motorways will now ever be done,
      Maybe nothing on our roads will e’re be the same
      But Hey! We are to have the High Speed Train.

      The cost from each house-hold, so we are told
      Will be a thousand pounds whether young or old,
      Yet perhaps none of us can afford to pay,
      But we have never yet been allowed a say.
      Not one High Speed train into Birmingham City,
      Time saved on the Journey, will be lost, ‘tis a pity
      The half-hour saved will be needed however,
      Through another mode of travel, not so clever.

      Whose great idea was this big spend on Trains?
      That many people travel on just now and again?
      Our Politicians never said the words to me or you,
      That our sovereign Government have to obey the EU?

  5. dave roderick says:

    That Hot US-EU Trade Deal? Destroys 600,000 EU Jobs – Study

    off topic but a must read go to wolf street blog for full read

    • Anne Palmer says:

      Off Topic dave roderisk-but very, very important.
      A War to End all Wars-when foreigners speak for all of us.

      I remember well that last terrible World War
      From Nineteen-Thirty-nine to forty-five
      When the bombs rained down upon us
      When to the shelters we went, to stay alive.
      To listen to the long speeches of Churchill,
      That, “Outside, the storms of war may blow,
      And the lands may be lashed with the fury of its gales”.
      Such inspiring words all of us so needed to know.

      Huddled up to the “wireless” to listen
      To every word Winston Churchill said,
      “We must not underrate the gravity”
      Oh so many times his words we read.
      He has gone down in UK History
      As the greatest Prime Minister of all,
      Oh, how we need the likes of him now,
      For our Country is heading for a fall.

      The blackest, treacherous Day of all for us,
      Although we didn’t know it, at the time,
      That there would be “no loss of essential Sovereignty”,
      When that Prime Minister told that treacherous lie.
      The deep betrayal “TODAY” by those we freely elect
      To keep secret the carefully planned T.T.I. P
      When strangers decide that our once free Country
      Will never again, ever be “FREE”.

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