An artist's impression of the HS2 line
An artist’s impression of the HS2 line

Lichfield’s MP has branded HS2 “an unstoppable and expensive behemoth”.

Michael Fabricant’s comments were made in Parliament publication The House Magazine.

The Conservative MP said that he did not object to the principle of the high speed rail scheme, but had concerns over the implementation of the controversial line.

“My main objection to HS2 is its lack of connectivity. The original plan would have connected the rail line to HS1 and the Channel Tunnel, Heathrow Airport, and the main rail interchange at Birmingham New Street station.

“HS2 does none of this.

“Instead of HS2 arriving at Birmingham New Street, it arrives at a separate station needing yet another trek to catch a connecting train.

“And any thoughts that Birmingham International Airport which will have a HS2 station to connect directly with Heathrow are also dashed – yet another station change is required at Old Oak Common to reach Britain’s busiest airport.

“The question has to be asked of whether the daily commute to London from the idlands and the north still be needed now that Covid has taught us all to video conference?

“I suspect HS2 is an unstoppable and expensive behemoth.”

Michael Fabricant MP

Mr Fabricant said supporters of the high speed rail line had “changed their arguments” on several occasions.

Michael Fabricant MP

“First, it was the glory of shaving ten minutes or so off the journey time between London and Birmingham, then it became the far more credible ‘it will relieve the congestion on existing railway lines such as the West Coast Main Line’.

“Now, proponents of HS2 seem to have even dropped that argument and say instead that it will create jobs. 

“For the amount of jobs it will create, the £100 billion-plus price tag seems a trifle high.”

Michael Fabricant MP

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16 Comments

  1. Interesting article:

    “The Conservative MP said that he did not object to the principle of the high speed rail scheme, but had concerns over the implementation of the controversial line.

    “My main objection to HS2 is its lack of connectivity. The original plan would have connected the rail line to HS1 and the Channel Tunnel, Heathrow Airport, and the main rail interchange at Birmingham New Street station.

    “HS2 does none of this.”

    So, in other words, if HS2 provided a direct connection to Lichfield he would have fully supported the wanton environmental destruction of large parts of Staffordshire?

    His sole objection seems to be the loss of a quick train ride for him to escape back to London.

    That’s the quality of his opposition to HS2. He only objects that Lichfield did not get a HS2 station. So joining those protestors at work sites was simply yet another photo opportunity. At least that finally clarifies what he really thinks about HS2.

  2. An absolute waste of money which could have been used far more wisely. Upsetting to see the devastation of our countryside, chopping down ancient oak trees on the road to King’s Bromley, it is disgusting that money isn’t spent on the potholes on this road before someone (probably a motorcyclist) is killed or seriously injured.

  3. A relevant comment from our MP. But of course the Conservatives will push ahead with this monstrosity, bearing in mind the well off people who are going to be its main customer base

  4. For once I agree with Mr Fabricant. HS1 has never & will never make any money. Connectivity is the key to well used public transport.

  5. @The Scribbler, “So, in other words, if HS2 provided a direct connection to Lichfield he would have fully supported the wanton environmental destruction of large parts of Staffordshire?

    His sole objection seems to be the loss of a quick train ride for him to escape back to London”. I am so disappointed in the Lichfield MP. More than ever. At least I thought he mean’t his opposition to HS2. You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, BUT NOT ALL OF THE PEOPLE ALL OF THE TIME. Never a truer word was said.
    .

  6. @LJ, “An absolute waste of money which could have been used far more wisely. Upsetting to see the devastation of our countryside, chopping down ancient oak trees on the road to King’s Bromley, it is disgusting that money isn’t spent on the potholes on this road before someone (probably a motorcyclist) is killed or seriously injured*. I couldn’t agree more.

  7. Megan – Mr Fabricant is a narcissist. Spend any day looking at his social media accounts and this becomes patently obvious. Whatever he does basically comes down to what suits him the most. So his opposition to HS2 is based purely on the fact he will not benefit directly from it.

    I find it disingenuous of him to have joined environmental campaigners in their protests against HS2 in recent months, when in fact if HS2 had included the connectivity he wanted he would have fully supported it and the hugely damaging impact it is having on large swathes of the country. Once again, the photo op with the protestors suited him as a way of encouraging people to support his “opposition”. Needless to say, if the HS2 connections he wants had been included he no doubt would have been condemning those same protestors and ridiculing their efforts on social media not posing alongside them waving flags.

    This is the calibre of the man and the MP that occupies one of the safest seats in the country. No wonder he feels so confident in doing and saying whatever he wants to suit his own agenda, He’s politically bullet-proof.

  8. I hear it has decimated countryside outside Lichfield too? The environmental impact of this vanity project will, l expect be like the northern relief road that enviromentilly has also left it’s mark indefinitely. HS2 though being a gash across Britain. It doesn’t matter if it is used fully but duping British taxpayers into thinking they, the Conservatives are keeping the economy bouyant. Labour too, it was their hair-brained idea. Local rail services could be improved, all that money spent on improving what we have & what we need in Britain’s societies today. Politician’s

  9. It’s disgusting what the HS2 is doing to our country side,and who is going to be using it,what a waste of money,and they are ruining Lichfield any way

  10. HS2 would not have been needed if as a country jobs had been relocated out of London. Places such as Milton Keynes , Rugby and Hemel Hempstead have been redeveloped for the commute to London . These people need more trains and yes people do commute from Lichfield on a daily basis. The problem has resulted in the west coast mainline suffering from conjestion. Euston is a dead end station so putting even more trains on means a queue of trains would start north of Watford. So the existing fast trains which start north of Stafford would become a lot slower. In a nutshell that is the problem thank god for the Victorians as most of our railway infrastructure wouldnt exist

  11. I haven’t fully read all of the above posts but get the gist that, like me, everyone is against HS2 for environmental and economic reasons.

    It is awful going through the affected countryside in our area, seeing the devastation to beautiful trees and precious wildlife and the environment as a whole, for what will be a totally pointless and unused, expensive form of transport.

    Even before the pandemic, who really cares about getting to London 10 or 20 minutes quicker than they would do by existing rail? And rail travel on the existing network is stupidly expensive even now … dread to think what it will cost on this ugly monster.

    But hardly anyone will use it anyway, why should they need to? We are all contactable in seconds now, no need for face to face meetings.

    This is the UK’s biggest transport mistake since it decided to play with that super fast supersonic plane called Concorde. Why couldn’t they learn from that?

    Our great grandkids will be looking back at what our beautiful country once had but lost to this dreadful waste of money and destruction of landscape and nature. And HS2 will be an unused ghost train that cost us billions financially. The money will be recouped from the taxpayers, but the countryside and the animals are gone forever.

    The people working on HS2 should be ashamed of themselves for what they are doing (but many of them are most probably from other countries and will be sending money back to their families so don’t give a toss about England).

    Rant over …

  12. @Karen Buckle: “The people working on HS2 should be ashamed of themselves for what they are doing (but many of them are most probably from other countries and will be sending money back to their families so don’t give a toss about England).”

    Do you have some evidence for your assertion that many of them are most probably from other countries? Do you have any evidence that they are sending the money back to their families in those other countries? Do you have any evidence that these foreign workers don’t give a toss about England?

    Perhaps the next time you decide to have a rant in public, you should take a bit more care about just what kind of unfounded, prejudiced views you choose to express.

  13. Karen – Casual racism never wins any argument and it was all going so well until that final paragraph.

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