HS2 in Hansard 06/02/2014

HS2 Skills Academy

6. Andrew Percy (Brigg and Goole) (Con): What

plans he has to set up a High Speed 2 skills academy.

[902418]

The Secretary of State for Transport (Mr Patrick

McLoughlin): In January, the Government announced

their intention to set up a new college to train the next

generation of world-class engineers to work on the

construction of High Speed 2.MyDepartment isworking

with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

and HS2 Ltd to develop the proposals,which are currently

at an early stage.

Andrew Percy: My right hon. Friend will know of the

proud manufacturing heritage in the Humber—in east

Yorkshire and north Lincolnshire. May I suggest that

he ensures that any such skills academy is located in the

Humber, and that a perfect locationwould be in Scunthorpe,

whichwas recently awarded a university technical college?

Mr McLoughlin: I am pleased about the awarding of

the UTC in my hon. Friend’s area, and he doubtless

campaigned for it vigorously. I know that he will continue

the campaign to get the HS2 skills college. I have had a

number of requests from various hon. Members on

where this college should be located.

Mr Brian H. Donohoe (Central Ayrshire) (Lab): As

an ex-apprentice, I am very passionate about the idea of

creating more apprenticeships, and this project presents

an ideal opportunity. Labour is committed to creating

one apprenticeship for every £1 million spent. Will the

Government do likewise?

Mr McLoughlin: What is important is the way in

which we have massively increased the number of

apprenticeships. Part of today’s announcement about

Bombardier means that there will be an increase in

apprenticeships in that area, and I am looking at every

possible avenue to encourage apprenticeships.

Heather Wheeler (South Derbyshire) (Con): Again,

may I congratulate Ministers on the brilliant result of

Bombardier getting the Crossrail deal and the 80 apprentices

that that contract will bring?Would it not make complete

sense for this academy to be based in Derby?

Mr McLoughlin: As I said to my hon. Friend the

Member for Brigg and Goole (Andrew Percy), there

will be a number of applications for the location of

this academy. I join my hon. Friend the Member for

South Derbyshire (Heather Wheeler) in congratulating

Bombardier, which won this Crossrail contract against

some stiff competition. It just shows that Bombardier

405 Oral Answers 6 FEBRUARY 2014 Oral Answers 406

can win competitions for rolling stock and that the

Government are committed to providing that rolling

stock, too.

Nic Dakin (Scunthorpe) (Lab): What assessment was

made of the capacity and expertise of existing further

education colleges before the decision was made to

spend £20 million of scarce public money on a new

academy?

Mr McLoughlin: I ampleased that the hon. Gentleman

seems not to be bidding; there will be one fewer venue to

consider as a result of that sort of intervention. It is not

often I hear people complaining about the Government

investing in higher education and the future of our

engineering skills. I am very proud we are doing it—it

will be £20 million well spent.

High Speed 2

16. Natascha Engel: To ask the Secretary of State for

Transport if he will publish the November 2011 Major

Projects Authority report on High Speed 2. [902429]

Mr McLoughlin: I exercised the power of veto to

withhold the release of the report. The full reasons for

that have been reported to Parliament. The Department

has already published over 200 pieces of material about

HS2. And we have held 10 major consultations in three

years.

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Secretary of State for

Transport what assessment he has made of progress on

the High Speed 2 Phase One environmental statement

consultation. [902426]

Mr Goodwill: TheEnvironmental Statement consultation

will conclude on 27 February. So far, we have received

just under 10,000 responses to the consultation.

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Andrew Bridgen: To ask the Secretary of State for

Culture, Media and Sport what steps her Department

is taking to protect waterway assets, including listed

buildings and conservation areas, from the effects of

High Speed 2. [R] [185936]

329W Written Answers 6 FEBRUARY 2014 Written Answers 330W

Mr Vaizey: Both the Department and its statutory

adviser, English Heritage, are represented on the HS2

National Environment Forum. In addition, English

Heritage is working with HS2 Ltd, local authorities and

others to ensure that the impacts of the proposed line,

including impacts on waterway heritage assets, have

been assessed properly and that appropriate mitigation

of those impacts has been identified. English Heritage

has also advised on the Heritage Memorandum for

Phase One of HS2, throughwhich heritage assets, including

waterway assets, will be protected during the construction

stage where they are vulnerable.

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