“While I will continue to oppose HS2 in Parliament and vote against the whole project when the HS2 Bill comes back to the House of Commons for 3rd Reading, probably in 2016, I will be supporting the Orders on Tuesday 23rd June which will change the routing of the line through Lichfield” says Michael Fabricant.
“The Orders which will be laid before Parliament will, as the Department of Transport have said, make ‘changes to the HS2 route near Lichfield, which mean the railway will now pass under the A38, the West Coast Main Line and the South Staffordshire line rather than run over them on viaducts – this will avoid the need for two crossings over the Trent and Mersey Canal, which had previously been of concern to local stakeholders, including the Canal and Rivers Trust’.
“This is a major victory for local campaigners and myself and will mitigate the damage to the environment had they stuck to the old route with the high viaduct. It has been a long hard fight to get these improvements and, if we cannot stop HS2, I am keen that these changes be made.
“Nevertheless, I continue to oppose the whole design of HS2 which unnecessarily damages previously unspoiled countryside, is more expensive than it need be, does not link with Heathrow Airport or the continent, and does not provide adequate links to stations like Birmingham New Street. That is why I will oppose it at 3rd Reading”, Michael adds.