die belebende Bedenkung

Never gonna give Crewe up

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Daresbury resident Pete ‘The Hitman’ Waterman told tourism chiefs about the £50bn HS2 high speed rail project at a conference in Chester, the Chronicle reported (27 March 2014).

Domestic HS1 trains in Kent run largely empty in the off-peak, because there is no incentive for the operator [Southeastern] to sell unoccupied seats (as it is handed subsidy on a supersize plate, it doesn’t need the hassle). But according to Mr Waterman, the excess capacity on HS2 would mean there would be “lots of deals to be had”.

[‘Hit-maker speaks up for HS2 rail project’, David Holmes, Chester Chronicle, Mar 27, 2014]

He said: “Everybody is going ‘This will be an expensive railway just for business’. There are, just on HS2, every hour, 10,000 seats. And HS2 will be running 17 hours a day. We don’t have to be geniuses to understand that to keep those trains full there will be lots of deals to be had.”

He also suggested that the original plan for HS2 “missed” Crewe, and had been changed. Had it not been, it would have meant “the end of the North West”.

“Five years ago when I saw the first map for HS2 and it missed Crewe by 21km, I thought ‘My God, this is the end of the North West’, which is why I joined the LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) and why I’ve been working with the DFT (Department for Transport) and joined the treasury team to make sure that they understood this is the second biggest part of our economy and it’s still the best and most under-performed.

Mr Waterman also appeared to think that Network Rail’s ‘Northern Hub’ scheme (last estimated at around ~£600 million) was a rather bigger scheme than it is.

As an example, he said £3.2bn was being spent on the ‘Northern Hub’, improving the service between Leeds and Liverpool, with a second phase enhancing the Manchester and Liverpool route via Warrington.


Written by beleben

March 27, 2014 at 6:31 pm

Posted in High speed rail, HS2

One Response

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  1. You missed Pete’s ‘pointing out that £60bn is already going into the current railway network’.
    You couldn’t make it up! Just the type that’s needed to hype up the numbers. As he implies, the LEP certainly looks like a self-selected / by invitation only operation.


    March 28, 2014 at 9:25 am

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