HS2 and the East Midlands (part two)
HS2 Ltd has produced an East Midlands ‘factsheet‘, with a photo of central Nottingham (although the company’s high speed trains would not stop there).
HS2 will widen opportunities for millions of people linking our big cities with London and with each other. It will re-write journey times between Britain’s major cities creating a high speed line that will integrate the economies of Birmingham, East Midlands, Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and many more as never before as well as linking them with London, the South East and Europe.
Regular, reliable services
Projected service times from existing Nottingham Midland in 2033:
1 hr 8 mins to London compared with 1 hr 44 mins today – three trains per hour via East Midlands Hub
36 mins to B’ham compared with 1 hr 13 mins today – three trains per hour via East Midlands Hub
46 mins to Leeds compared with 1 hr 46 mins today – five trains per hour via East Midlands Hub
Journey times from existing stations such as Nottingham Midland (above) will be reduced as a result of linking to HS2 at the new East Midlands Hub station at Toton. Projected journey times from the new station, for which no suitable comparisons exist, are given below.
Journey times from new East Midlands Hub station at Toton Destination Current time (mins) HS2 time (mins) London n/a 51 Heathrow n/a 70 Birmingham n/a 19 Sheffield Midland n/a 17 Leeds n/a 29 York n/a 36 Newcastle n/a 106 The current projected journey time from the East Midlands to Newcastle is 2 hr 59 minutes. HS2 will reduce this to 1 hr 46 minutes, a saving of 1 hr 13 minutes. Other intermediate destinations on the proposed service specification including but not limited to Darlington and Durham would experience similar journey time reductions.
* Journeys to Heathrow Airport based on Heathrow Express/Crossral [sic] from HS2 station at Old Oak Common
Although it mentions Derby, the information sheet doesn’t provide connectivity details for that city. The sheet claims that the time from Nottingham to boarding a HS2 train at Toton would be 17 minutes, but there is no explanation as to how that could happen.
For trips from Nottingham to Birmingham, London, and Sheffield, HS2 Toton looks uncompetitive compared to a modernised legacy network. There would be a time saving on HS2 to Leeds and York, but those flows are quite small.
By rail Nottingham Midland to Toton is about the same distance as Nottingham Midland to Long Eaton, and that journey is currently timetabled taking from around 15 to 22 minutes. I would suggest that in allowing 17 minutes for the entire local leg, HS2 Ltd are engaging in misrepresentation.