HS2 and London Midland commuting
As part of its contribution to the HS2 propaganda effort, Network Rail produced fact sheets about the “benefits” for commuter towns on the West Coast Main Line.
However, the fact sheets turned out to be spin sheets, with little in the way of verifiable fact.
The weasel wording of the Hemel fact sheet is typical of Network Rail’s lamentable public relations output.
[from Network Rail Hemel HS2 factsheet]
[…] At peak times, there are on average five trains an hour into Euston that serve Hemel Hempstead, but already 140 passengers for every 100 seats on some arrivals. […]
Impact of HS2
The capacity that would be freed up on completion of the first phase of HS2 between London and Birmingham would
allow for a significant improvement in rail services for Hemel Hempstead:
• Up to six trains an hour to London Euston
According to Network Rail, there are currently ‘on average’ 5 Euston trains from Hemel. But with HS2, there would be ‘up to’ 6. Woo-hoo.
What is the real “likely impact” of HS2 on London Midland commuting to Hemel? Probably zero. Zilch. Nada.
And ditto for Berkhamsted.
Network Rail also mentioned that the “impact” of HS2 would mean “All passengers have a reasonable expectation of a seat”. But what does that mean?
If Crossrail 1 were extended to Tring, that would imply the use of ‘regional metro‘ type rolling stock, which have fewer seats than the existing Desiro trains.