What is HS2AA?

HS2 Action Alliance is a voluntary, not for profit organisation which was founded to question and evaluate the Government’s decision to proceed with a new high speed rail network known as HS2. HS2 Action Alliance believes the case for HS2 is flawed and that there are credible alternatives that are cheaper and represent much better value for the taxpayer.

The organisation was founded in 2010 on the basis that a robust, evidence based approach would establish whether HS2 was in the national interest. HS2 Action Alliance works closely with both its thousands of registered supporters and the over 100 local groups located in communities from Euston to Staffordshire to make the powerful case against HS2.

HS2AA is not an organisation of “NIMBYs” or against the UK having a world class transport system and economy able to compete and win. HS2AA is not an organisation with any particular party affiliation and encourages membership from all persons, regardless of their political beliefs.

Our approach is focussed on communicating the facts about HS2 clearly and accurately, providing evidence where required and pointing out the myths that much of the support for HS2 is built on. The organisation is comprised exclusively of volunteers. No director is paid and all funds raised are exclusively used for campaigning purposes.

Since its founding in 2010, HS2AA has sought to question, evaluate and where appropriate,challenge the flawed economic andenvironmental case for HS2.We have also identified and promoted alternatives to HS2 that are in the national interest.

Another core work stream of HS2AA is to correct the injustice of property blight, by seeking to minimise the adverse impacts of HS2 on individuals, communities and the environment. From the outset of HS2 we have sought to work with HS2, Government and other stakeholders to emphasise the consequences of blight and promoting alternatives which could deal with the issue. In particular we have promoted an Alternative Compensation Solution based on private sector best practice known as the “Property Bond”.

Our achievements to date:

  • Researched and published evidence on the flaws in the case for HS2
  • Worked to publicise the unacceptable environmental damage HS2 will cause and its impact on plans for the UK to have a sustainable transport system.
  • Reviewed and challenged in detail the “Business Cost Ratio” or BCR which underpins the Government’s justification for HS2.
  • Researched, analysed, developed and delivered to HS2 Ltd an alternative compensation proposal, in co-operation with local action groups which became one of the three options consulted on by the Government in their 2011 consultation on high speed rail.
  • Secured pre-consultee stakeholder status in connection with the Government’s 2010 consultation on compensation
  • In conjunction with local groups the length of the line, researched, surveyed and produced a Property Blight Pilot Study Report that demonstrates to HS2 Ltd/DfT the extent of blight on all the routes, and the need for a fair compensation scheme.
  • Contributed to the Labour Party Transport Policy Review, highlighting the deficiencies in the proposals for HS2.
  • Drafted and delivered numerous pieces of research concerning the assumptions utilised by the Government to justify its support for HS2.
  • Appeared before the House of Commons Transport Select Committee as part of its inquiry into HS2.
  • Met regularly with Members of Parliament, Members of the House of Lords, Members of the European Parliament and the London Assembly on why Britain loses with HS2
  • Lobbied the Scottish Parliament about the particular problems HS2 poses for Scotland
  • Raised the funds required to commence judicial review proceedings against the Government in connection with the lawfulness of the decision to proceed with HS2.

Governance

HS2 Action Alliance is a company limited by guarantee, overseen by directors who serve without remuneration. Our directors are Hilary Wharf, Bruce Weston, Graham Long, Andrew Bodman and Thomas Crane. You can read a copy of our formal articles of association by clicking here

Hilary Wharf
Hilary is an economist, after a career in British Coal, she has had a close association working for key rail organisations in the UK over the last 20 years. Hilary operates Wharf Weston Rail Consultants, a management consultancy established in 1990 alongside Bruce Weston.

Bruce Weston
Bruce an operational research scientist. In recent years Bruce has worked almost exclusively for train companies helping them win bids for rail franchises.

Graham Long
Graham qualified as an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers in 1975, subsequently holding a variety of senior managerial positions in Midland/HSBC Bank, including Area Director, Coventry & Warwickshire, Divisional Head of Credit for the Midlands and finally as Head of Commercial C&R for the UK & Europe.

Graham has been a Governor at Coventry University since 2008 and is currently Chair of the Finance and Estates Committee.  External experience has included chair of the major companies section of Coventry & Warwickshire CCI and a member of the West Midlands Industrial Development Board Grants Committee.

Thomas Crane
Thomas qualified as a solicitor in 2000, subsequently holding a variety of roles in private practice and in-house.

 Support Us

The organisation relies extensively on voluntary support. Volunteers donate funds, sign up friends and family as HS2AA supporters as well as providing specialised support to the campaign.  We are extremely grateful to all of those people who help HS2AA in so many different ways.

Disclaimer: HS2 Action Alliance has made reasonable endeavours to ensure the accuracy and completeness of all material and information available on this website, but it should not be relied upon legally.