Michael Fabricant is encouraging everyone affected by HS2 to attend events organised by HS2, including Kings Bromley and Hints in January, and respond to the Government’s consultation on the Compensation that will be made available to those affected by HS2. “I will work closely with local HS2 action groups in responding to the consultation”, says Michael. “We must have a united front on this to extract the maximum compensation we can for those affected by HS2 now and later – if the construction actually goes ahead in our area.
“Meanwhile, I will continue to fight to have the route moved totally away from Staffordshire and use the route originally favoured by ARUP engineers which would follow existing transport corridors”. (ARUP are the firm of engineers contracted to design the route of HS2 for the Government).
“The HS2 Compensation events will be held at the Kings Bromley Village Hall on Monday 7th January 2013 and in Hints Village Hall on Tuesday 8th January – both between noon and 8pm. But as that is close to the 31st January deadline the Government has set for responses to their consultation, it will be possible to attend an earlier event on the Thursday 29th November at The Loft in the Bluebell Centre, Chelmsely Wood. I am recommending that action groups in Lichfield and Whittington attend that session too.”
Alison Munro, the Chief Executive of HS2 says: “The new high speed rail network will help to grow the economy by providing capacity to meet the rising demand for train services and by improving connections between our major cities. But we do understand the impact it will have on people living close to the line and the Government has recently published a range of property compensation measures for consultation. The information events we are running are an opportunity for those directly affected to come and discuss the proposals in more detail with our property teams.”
Meanwhile, Michael Fabricant has received a letter from Simon Burns, the Minister for Rail which outlines the Government’s Compensation plans and instructions on how to respond to them.
“I urge all those affected to respond to these proposals and note the 31st January 2013 deadline”, Michael Fabricant adds.
An extract from the letter from the Department for Transport follows:-
On 25 October the Government published a consultation on proposals to help those concerned about how High Speed Two (HS2) will affect a property they own or occupy.
I am very aware that HS2 will have a particular impact on your constituency and am writing to encourage you to help shape Government policy by responding to that consultation.
The Property and Compensation consultation sets out a generous compensation package.
The proposals include:
• a streamlined system of advanced and voluntary purchase to simplify the process for property owners in the safeguarded area and provide greater certainty for those property owners outside the safeguarded area in rural areas;
• a sale and rent back scheme, to allow homeowners whose property will be required to sell their homes but remain living in them as tenants until the properties are required for the railway;
• a hardship scheme, to help those with a need to move during the development of HS2 but who are unable to sell their home despite being outside both the safeguarded area and the voluntary purchase zone;
• a series of measures designed to provide confidence in properties above tunnels; and
• a framework for working with all local authorities, housing associations and tenants affected by HS2, to agree a joint strategy to replace any social rented housing which is lost.
It is important to note that these wide-ranging proposals are not a reflection of what the Government believes the long term impacts of HS2 will be. Rather they reflect the understandable concern that currently exists in the
property markets near the HS2 line of route. We believe that property prices will recover over time but, at the same time, we recognise that the current property markets may not reflect this.
Alongside the property consultation published today, we are also publishing a consultation on safeguarding directions for HS2. This will set out the proposed area of land considered necessary to protect the line of route from
conflicting developments, that is to say planning permission being granted for developments on land that will be required for the construction or operation of HS2. This will also set the ‘safeguarded area’ within which compensation measures will apply.
Both consultations will close on 31st January 2013. We would welcome responses sent:
• online by completing the response form: http://hiqhspeedrail.dft.gov.uk
• or by e-mailing: HS2propertycompensation@dialoguebydesign.com
• or by writing to:
FREEPOST HS2 PROPERTY AND COMPENSATION CONSULTATION
Minister for Transport