A CAMPAIGN group’s call to scrap the HS2 high speed rail project has provoked a furious backlash from the Yorkshire business community.
The Taxpayers’ Alliance has today published a new report warning that the cost of HS2 is soaring and claiming it will not deliver the economic benefits to the North that have been promised.
The first phase of HS2 will connect London and Birmingham with the second phase seeing eastern and western ‘legs’ going north to Manchester and Yorkshire.
Gerald Jennings, president of the Leeds Chamber of Commerce said it was “particularly galling for a London based organisation to be questioning the HS2 project and the improvements it will bring to the North’s connectivity to other parts of the country an well as providing much needed capacity on our frequently overcrowded rail network.”
He added: “There is no other project that will bring the economic uplift that HS2 will bring about, it will be transformational and help provide a rail network fit for future generations.
“Not an HS2 track has been laid yet but there’s tangible enthusiasm building in the city and beyond for it.”
But the Taxpayers’ Alliance described HS2 as an “expensive vanity project” and claimed London would receive more benefits than any other area.
Chief executive Jonathan Isaby said: “The new Prime Minister should now be pursuing bold and imaginative policies to boost economic growth and increase productivity – and that positive approach must include scrapping HS2, which has cost taxpayers far too much already.”