Why the Government has failed Leeds in scrapping HS2 - YEP Letters

Mark Johnson, of Roundhay, writes:

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 11:45 am

Leeds is becoming a standing joke for failed rail schemes, but even for us, to lose two in a day is a first.

HS2, the much-vaunted high-speed connection that was going to transform travel to London and Birmingham, has been culled.

No surprise there, even though the financial benefits of the Leeds leg were calculated to be greater than building the Manchester leg.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

HS2 has been culled

Previous experience tells us that when the axe was going to fall it was always going to be on Leeds.

After all, we’re not Europe’s largest city without a light rail transit system for nothing.

First it was ‘Supertram’ that was deemed too expensive, only for the Government to subsequently open trams in Edinburgh, Nottingham and Croydon.

Then it was the trolley buses that were cancelled because they were ‘too cheap’. Go figure?

But then we were told to take heart because HS2 was going to free up capacity on the already-overstretched Victorian network of lines and this would transform regional travel.

But no, you can’t have that any more, you’ll have to just use the existing lines and smile.

At least we could console ourselves that HS3 will provide a superfast journey to Manchester through new lines and tunnels through the Pennines.

But no, we now learn this is to be downgraded.

There will be no high-speed rail to Manchester, we Northerners are evidently still happy to use the old mill lines that trundle over the tops.

But it’s not all bad news, the £19 billion Crossrail from Reading to London is nearly open and they’re now talking about building a Crossrail 2 – brilliant.

We really have been taken to the cleaners by this Government with failed promises over transport.

It is not acceptable and someone in local government or the West Yorkshire Mayor should be screaming about

this.

How can every major scheme to get people out of their cars be culled and yet everywhere else seems to be moving forward?

Looks like the only option is to fly from our shiny new airport – oh, I forgot, it’s been called in by the Government, who are going to cull it.

Par for the course.

Support the YEP and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news and the latest on Leeds United, With a digital subscription, you see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.