die belebende Bedenkung

Down to the wire

with 2 comments

Certainly not 'getting on for fifty years old': West Coast Main Line wiring in the West Midlands

In his speech ‘Benefits of High Speed 2 to Britain and the economy‘ delivered on 11 September 2013, transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin said


“We’ve already spent £9 billion on the last West Coast upgrade north of Rugby but that didn’t finish the job. The overhead wiring is getting on for 50 years old.”

So, what is the evidence base for that statement?

Apparently, there isn’t one. The Department for Transport has now stated

  • it does not hold information on the age of overhead lines, but the West Coast Modernisation “renewed most of the wiring where line speeds were increased and improved the power feeding arrangements”
  • “£9bn was spent on the whole of the West Coast Project between 1998 and 2008. The Department does not hold information on the split of expenditure North and South of Rugby”.

Written by beleben

March 4, 2014 at 10:49 am

Posted in High speed rail, HS2

2 Responses

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  1. […] McLoughlin has form for making comments which turn out not to be rather less than accurate. While deletion of the Camden HS1 link to Europe would (in theory) […]

  2. […] the Beleben blog revealed in March, the Department for Transport says it “does not hold information” on how much […]

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