HS2 in Hansard 08/07/2014

HS2 Phase One: Property Consultation 2014

The Secretary of State for Transport (Mr Patrick
McLoughlin): Further to my commitment in the 9 April
decision document “Property Compensation Consultation
2013 for the London-West Midlands HS2 route”, I am
today announcing to the House the launch of a consultation
on additional assistance for people near the route of
phase 1 of the proposed high-speed railway, between
London and the west midlands.
The “Property Consultation 2014”sets out two proposals:
An “alternative cash offer” that would give rural owner
occupiers within the rural support zone a choice between
selling their home to the Government for what it would have
been worth had there been no plans for HS2 and remaining
in their home and receiving 10% of that value. We would
apply a minimum payment of £30,000 and payments would
be capped at £100,000. This scheme would launch by the end
of 2014 and last until one year after the trains start running;
A “homeowner payment scheme” that would give rural
home owners outside the voluntary purchase area but within
300 metres of the line the opportunity to share in the
benefits of HS2 as it would run near them but will not
provide them with a direct benefit.We are proposing to taper
payments as follows: owner occupiers between 120 metres
and 180 metres of the centre line of the railway would
receive £22,500, those between 180 metres and 240 metres
£15,000 and those between 240 metres and 300 metres £7,500.
The Government are committed to assisting those
who are impacted by HS2. These proposals build on the
comprehensive package of compensation and assistance
which I set out in April.
This consultation will close on 30 September 2014.

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Crispin Blunt: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport what assessment he has made of the
potential of (a) Elon Musk’s hyperloop trains and (b)
Bombardier’s double-deck trains as an alternative to
High Speed 2 in increasing capacity on the railways.
Mr Goodwill: The Government believes that high
speed rail offers the most suitable approach to promoting
economic growth and providing the long-termtransport
capacity our country needs. It utilises proven technologies,
while untested systems such as Hyperloop risk delay to
delivery, which would mean a delay to much needed
capacity increases between London and Birmingham,
and cost overruns.
We have considered a wide range of alternative options
to a high speed railway including the use of alternative
modes, a conventional speed line and upgrades to the
existing rail network. Alternatives, such as the use of
double deck trains on the west coast main line, do not
release capacity for commuter and freight services, fail
to offer a robust solution to the problem of poor
performance and would significantly disrupt services as
upgrade work is carried out to rebuild the tunnels,
bridges and other railway infrastructure that would be
needed to accommodate these trains.
Mrs Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport whether he or any minister approved or
commented on decisions to challenge the locus standi
of any petitioner against the Hybrid Bill for Phase 1 of
High Speed 2. [203670]
Mr Goodwill: The Secretary of State and departmental
Ministers were advised of the petitioners whose locus
standi was proposed to be challenged and approved
those proposals.
Mrs Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport if he will publish before the locus standi
hearings the reasons for each challenge by HS2 Ltd.
Mr Goodwill: Each petitioner whose locus standi is
being challenged has received a letter informing them of
the reasons for the challenge, to allow them to prepare
their case to be heard by the Select Committee. The
promoter’s case for challenging locus will be set out in
detail at the locus hearings which are held in public with
transcripts published. There are, therefore, no plans to
publish the grounds for challenge separately.
Mrs Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport if he will publish all the responses to the
petition response documents to petitions on High
Speed 2. [203672]
Mr Goodwill:We would not normally expect to publish
correspondence from a petitioner in response to a petition
response document.
Mrs Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport (1) which (a) Ministers in his Department,
(b) officials in his Department and (c) HS2 Ltd
personnel have attended meetings with the China
Development Bank; [203674]
(2) if he will publish all documents exchanged
between the Government and the China Development
Bank mentioning or concerning High Speed 2 or
associated development or works. [203673]
Mr Goodwill: As far as the Department’s records
show, there have been no ministerial meetings with the
China Development Bank while onmulti-modal overseas
visits to China. Nor do Ministers’ diaries record any
meetings with the China Development Bank.
With respect to officials, we have focused on those
most likely to have contact with an organisation such as
the China Development Bank. It would appear from
the records that no officials from the Department for
Transport’s International Co-operation and Better
Regulation Division, High Speed Rail Group or
InternationalRail have met with the China Development
There have been no inward delegations from the
ChinaDevelopment Bank to the Department forTransport.
HS2Ltd have had no meetings with ChinaDevelopment
In the course of compiling this response, we have not
identified any correspondencewith the ChinaDevelopment

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Mrs Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for
Transport how many complaints have been received
from members of the public about employees of (a)
HS2 Ltd, (b) his Department or (c) any member of
staff seconded to either HS2 Ltd or his Department in
relation to the High Speed 2 project; what the grade
was of the person against whom the complaint was
made; and what the (i) substance and (ii) result was of
each such complaint. [204010]
Mr Goodwill: The Department for Transport’s complaints
officer has not investigated any complaints against DfT
staff working on HS2 or referred any such complaints
to be considered by the Department’s independent
complaints assessors.
HS2 Ltd has received a total of 12 complaints since
the start of April 2014, two of which have been referred
to the parliamentary and health services ombudsman
(PHSO). These are ‘complaints about service’ and not
necessarily complaints about particular employees. The
10 complaints not referred to the ombudsman are
considered to be resolved by HS2 Ltd.