Scotland urged to begin work for high-speed rail link
Published: 8th Nov 2011 08:16:46
The Scottish government is being urged to begin preparatory work for a high-speed rail link.
The House of Commons transport committee has backed proposals for a high-speed line between London, the Midlands and eventually Scotland.
HS2 will feature 250mph trains running from London to Birmingham, with plans to extend it north.
The Scottish government has agreed to discuss the funding of the project to develop the route across the border.
The entire HS2 project is set to cost £32bn.
In addition to the connection between London and Birmingham, there are also plans for a Y-shaped extension to Manchester and Leeds, and possibly further north, to be completed about 2032/33.
In its report the transport committee said there was no reason the Scottish government should delay building a section of the track from Glasgow to the border, to connect with the English network in due course.
The best way to ensure it does go to Scotland is for the Scottish ministers themselves to do some work to ensure that that happens”
The committee said the UK government should also consider building southwards and suggests the Scottish government could begin preparatory work on a high-speed line.
The Scottish government said it would discuss funding with Westminster and Transport Scotland said it was ready to start preparatory work.
It has asked for the remit of the UK government's high speed rail company, HS2 Limited, to be extended to include planning for routes to and within Scotland.
Opponents said the report left HS2 "in tatters" because MPs said they could not be sure it would bring the economic benefits ministers predict.
The committee's support for the rail link, which aims to cut the London to Birmingham journey time to 49 minutes, came with a number of provisos.
The committee demanded that ministers "firmly commit" to extending the high-speed link to both Leeds and Manchester before seeking parliamentary approval for the London to Birmingham route.
The Labour chairwoman of the committee, Louise Ellman, said the scheme was affordable and would provide a "step change" in the quality and frequency of rail services between major cities.
She told BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme: "The best way to ensure it does go to Scotland is for the Scottish ministers themselves to do some work to ensure that that happens.
"We see this as a line for the nation and we think it should not just stop at any one area, that it's important to have increased capacity and better connectivity right across the UK."
At 03:03:37 in WorldBritain is to temporarily close its embassy in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, because of worsening violence.
At 02:30:08 in EnglandHundreds of cobbles in a Manchester square are to be photographed to ensure they are returned in the same position once a new tram link has been built.
At 02:12:09 in EnglandThe remains of a grand Hampshire house destroyed during the English Civil War are being unearthed for the first time in more than a century.
At 01:47:29 in HeadlinesJournalists in Mexico have criticised a new law that restricts crime reporting in north-eastern Sinaloa state.
At 01:46:42 in EnglandFriendly, eclectic and organised by a fireman, the first-ever Cambridge Folk Festival could easily have been the last. Half a century later, and the festival taking place this weekend is known around the world as a premier music event.
At 01:43:48 in EnglandSome of the 20th Century's best-known "concrete cities", such as Birmingham, Hull, Portsmouth and Coventry, are embarking on major regeneration work. But as the bulldozers move in, what is being lost?
At 01:43:16 in HeadlinesForeign drivers are costing councils millions of pounds every year due to unpaid parking fines, the Local Government Association says.
At 01:39:49 in EnglandA Lancashire theatre's orchestra pit will be transformed into a World War One trench to commemorate the conflict.
At 01:38:17 in HeadlinesHamas says it does not know the whereabouts of an Israeli soldier it had been accused of capturing in Gaza.
At 01:36:35 in ScotlandWith the centenary of Britain joining the First World War approaching, communities around the country are preparing to mark the anniversary in their own way.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2011. Scotland urged to begin work for high-speed rail link [Online] (Updated 8th Nov 2011)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/200437/Scotland-urged-to-begin-work-for-high-speed-rail-link [Accessed 2nd Aug 2014]
News In Other Categories
An investigation has backed the British Medical Journal's handling of two controversial and inaccurate articles it published on the harms of cholesterol-reducing statins.
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
One hundred years ago this summer Britain and her Empire stood on the brink of war. Frantic last-minute diplomacy had come to nothing - and armies were mobilising across Europe.
The Uber taxi app is "competing unfairly" with London's black cabs, senior Labour MP Margaret Hodge says.
The agents have already started circling. Life may never be the same for Claudia Fragapane.
Hundreds of cobbles in a Manchester square are to be photographed to ensure they are returned in the same position once a new tram link has been built.