Labour supporters opposed to wasteful high speed rail plans


14 June 2011 – A new YouGov poll shows that the Government’s plan for a second high speed rail line is viewed as a bad use of public money by most Labour voters in the Midlands and Wales.


48% of respondents in the region who said they would vote Labour if there was an election tomorrow believe the new rail line, which is set to run initially from London to Birmingham and then to Manchester and Leeds, is too costly and want to see funds spent on other public services. Only 35% agreed High Speed Rail would eventually generate more money than it cost and help to break down the North-South divide.


Commenting on the findings, Jerry Marshall, Chairman of AGAHST, a group of grassroots organisations opposed to the construction of HS2 said:


“It’s not surprising that so many Labour voters oppose this white elephant. It fails the test of social justice and fairness, with ordinary households having to pay over £1,000 to subsidise travel for the better off  at a time when Birmingham Council is cutting over 7,000 jobs and slashing services for young people by £3m per year.


“There are much more affordable ways to improve our rail system to benefit more people and create more jobs more quickly. This is a white elephant – and it seems most Labour voters agree. It’s time Ed Miliband dropped his support for this project – who’s side is he on?”



For further information please contact Richard Houghton


Note: YouGov interviewed 385 adults in the Midlands and Wales who said they would vote Labour if there were a General Election tomorrow. Fieldwork was undertaken during the period 7th – 9th June 2011 and carried out online.