HS2AA and Hillingdon Council in Court to take new Legal Action over HS2

9th June 2014:  HS2 Action Alliance (HS2AA) and Hillingdon Council will be in the High Court tomorrow (Tuesday 10th June 2014) to challenge the Government in respect of the controversial high speed rail project HS2.

The High Court will hear a fresh judicial review challenge on HS2, this time challenging the decision by the Secretary of State for Transport to issue safeguarding directions without first undertaking a Strategic Environmental Assessment.

The hearing has been listed for one day only with judgment likely to be reserved and issued at a later date. The case is being heard by Mr Justice Lindblom.

If the High Court hearing on safeguarding is successful, the current ban on developing land identified for the route of Phase 1 of HS2 would be lifted and could not be reinstated until the Government has completed a valid environmental assessment.

Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said: “Despite the Government telling us that resistance is futile, we will continue our fight against this flawed plan, however long it takes. This is not a done deal and we will continue to challenge the Government.

“We also remain committed to assisting residents groups and local businesses and will continue to help wherever possible with the resources and support people need.”

Hilary Wharf, director,HS2 Action Alliance, said; “Since the start of this project there has been a sorry story of the Government trying to avoid important environmental protection requirements which are enshrined in law. We believe that the same environmental and planning law standards should apply to HS2 as any other project, and we are prepared to go to the High Court to protect that principle”.

Ends

Notes for Editors:

  1. The London Borough of Hillingdon is facing massive disruption over many years should the current plans for HS2 proceed, including the placement of a new landfill directly next to thousands of homes which would be one of Europe’s largest. The recent Environmental Statement for HS2 detailed a significant number of adverse environmental impacts in the borough including loss of important amenities such as the Hillingdon Outdoor Activity Centre, numerous wildlife sites, disruption to traffic and local businesses over many years.
  2. HS2 Action Alliance is a national non-profit organisation which opposes the current HS2 proposals. It is backed by thousands of people across the country together with over 100 affiliated local action groups and residents associations.
  3.  Safeguarding directions are instructions issued by the Secretary of State for Transport that require local authorities impacted by Phase 1 of HS2 to refer planning applications which might interfere with the construction of HS2 to HS2 Ltd for a decision.
  4. The Strategic Environmental Assessment Regulations are an important element of the planning process and require a full assessment of the likely impacts of any decision which may impact the environment.

 

For more information please contact:

Richard Hougthon

HS2 Action Alliance

Tel: 07803 178 037

Email: richardwhoughton@gmail.com