The incoming Transport Minister, Justine Greening, has announced the cancellation of the High Speed 2 rail project which would have linked London and Birmingham.
Speaking from her constituency home in Putney, Ms Greening said, ‘looking at the facts, it has become clear that shortening the journey time between London and Birmingham by 23 minutes isn’t really going to revive the economy.’
The first stage of HS2, linking Euston to the Midlands, budgeted at £17bn excluding backhanders, would reduce journey times from 1hr 12mins to 49 minutes, a gain the Transport Secretary described as ‘bugger all’.
Greening went on to say, ‘I’m not sure Birmingham contains any economic activity, so quite why we’d want to get there quicker is beyond me.’
‘Actually, would £17bn be enough to have Birmingham moved further away?’