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  • You are here:HS2

Lafarge Tarmac and Land Securities petition against HS2

Lafarge Tarmac, Land Securities and The Church of England are among thousands of petitioners to raise concerns around the construction of High Speed 2.

A list of around 2,000 petitions against HS2 has been published.

The Church of England warned of the “destruction” of three burial grounds, which would see the removal of human remains and monuments. Property group Land Securities highlighted properties that could be affected by HS2.

Other high-profile petitioners included Boris Johnson, who warned of the “severe consequences” the railway would have for Greater London and Transport for London, which stressed the line failed to make provisions for cyclists and pedestrians around Old Oak Common.

Petitioning was split into two groups, local authorities and businesses; and individuals and parish councils. Both opened on 29 April 2014 and closed on 16 May and 23 May, respectively.

Organisations including Lafarge Tarmac, Cemex UK, Scottish Widows and a group submission between QPR, Stadium Capital and Genesis Housing Association also submitted petitions.

A spokesperson for Lafarge Tarmac said the company supported “the principle of high speed infrastructure” in the UK.

The company said: “As part of the ongoing consultation around the HS2 Bill, there is a prescribed legal process that enables organisations to identify specific effects of the project on their assets.”

“We have raised a petition as part of this process,  as have many other companies, but we firmly believe that an appropriate agreement can be reached with the promoter and HS2.”

MPs including Dan Byles, Andrea Leadsom and Sir Tony Baldry lined up against the bill, as well as Lord Rothschild, who owns land along the route.

Under existing plans, work on phase one of HS2 between London and Birmingham is scheduled to start in 2017 and will open in 2026. Phase two, split into an eastern and western leg to Leeds and Manchester, is not scheduled to open until 2032 or 2033.

In April, MPs overwhelmingly backed legislation for the HS2 bill in its second reading in the House of Commons.

Writing for Construction News this week, Pinsent Masons partner Robbie Owen said the government will try to reach agreements with some of the petitioners but others will go through a new select committee, “charged with hearing all of the petitions that have been deposited”.

He added: “All of this means that the bill cannot hope to complete its passage through parliament until towards the end of 2016, at the earliest, especially as there will be a repeat of the process in the House of Lords.”

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