Achievements

Since 2010 HS2 Action Alliance has worked to make the powerful economic and environmental case against HS2. Our work has helped to move questions about the scheme to the centre of political debate. We have also beaten the Government in court on its decisions around compensation. We have been:

Holding the Government to Account

  • We brought two legal challenges in December 2012 against the Government’s decision to proceed with HS2. Our legal cases dealt with the failure of the Secretary of State for Transport to act lawfully in relation to compliance with important environmental legislation and also in relation to compensation arrangements for communities impacted by HS2.
  • In March 2013, it was announced that HS2AA had won the legal challenge against the Government’s decision on compensation for households impacted by Property Blight. The Court deemed the decision taken by the Secretary of State for Transport to be “so unfair as to be unlawful”. The Court ordered the Government to set their decision to one side and to undertake a new and lawful consultation.
  • In October 2013 we took our environmental case to appeal in the Supreme Court.
  • HS2AA continues to review closely the decisions taken by HS2 Ltd or the Secretary of State for Transport to ensure they are lawful, and would not hesitate to bring further actions should this be required.

Political Campaigning

  • HS2AA engages regularly with decision makers in Westminster, Whitehall and the devolved assemblies to make the case against HS2.
  • We work closely with politicians who are opposed to HS2 to hold the Government to account in Parliament.
  • HS2AA attends party conferences and other political events to set out the case against HS2.
  • HS2AA contributed to the Labour Party Transport Policy Review, highlighting the deficiencies in the proposals for HS2.
  • HS2AA appeared before the House of Commons Transport Select Committee as part of its inquiry into HS2, to set out the failings in the business case put forward by the Government in respect of this scheme. HS2AA also appeared before the House of Commons Committee considering the HS2 Paving Bill.

Research

  • Since its inception in 2010, HS2 Action Alliance has drafted and delivered numerous pieces of research concerning the assumptions utilised by the Government to justify its support for HS2. In particular HS2AA has undertaken detailed challenge to the “Business Cost Ratio” or BCR which underpins the Government’s justification for HS2 and on appropriate mitigation matters.
  • In conjunction with local groups along the length of the line, HS2AA researched, surveyed and produced a Property Blight Pilot Study Report that demonstrated to HS2 Ltd the extent of blight on all the routes, and the need for a fair compensation scheme.
  • HS2AA 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.
  • HS2AA secured pre-consultee stakeholder status in connection with the Government’s 2010 consultation on compensation

Media Relations

  • HS2AA works to ensure the facts about HS2 are fully understood by the media. We ensure the poor business case, high environmental cost and human impacts of blight are covered properly. Our representatives have appeared across national and local TV and radio, and engage regularly with the press. Our work in this area is key to ensuring the reality of HS2 is understood by as many people as possible.

Communities Together

  • HS2 is causing misery and blight for thousands of people across the country. These impacts are worsened by a Government which appears determined to provide as little information as possible to communities impacted by the new line.
  • HS2AA works with local community representatives and our affiliated action groups to ensure actions by Government are properly scrutinsed and information provided to help people understand what the Government’s actions mean.
  • HS2AA provides background data and other information to help local affiliated groups and its registered supporters respond to Government consultations on HS2. Our representatives regularly speak to community groups, public meetings and local government forums on issues raised by the HS2 project.