What is HS2?

High Speed 2 is a deeply controversial plan by the Government to construct a new high-speed rail network linking London, the West Midlands, Leeds and Manchester.

The cost of HS2 (over £42 billion for the track and £8 billion for the rolling stock) means it is arguably the most expensive single project ever attempted by a British government in peacetime, dwarfing items such as the current aircraft carrier program (£7bn plus aircraft), NHS Connecting for Health IT Program (£12bn), Nimrod MRA4 program (£4bn) or the Millennium Dome (£1bn).

The returns for this unprecedented level of expenditure are meagre- few jobs, more economic activity in London at the expense of the rest of the country and irreversible environmental damage. HS2AA is not alone in opposing the scheme-a broad coalition from across the political divide has emerged to oppose these proposals since they were first announced in 2010.

On this page you can find out more about what HS2 is and what it will mean for our country. You can even step into the shoes of the Secretary of State for Transport and see if you can do a better job of making decisions about the country’s future.