IWA responds to latest HS2 route consultation

THE Inland Waterways Association has responded to HS2’s consultation on design refinements to the Secretary of State for Transport’s preferred route for the HS2 Phase 2b route.

IWA has serious concerns over the impact on inland waterways as HS2 is developed in the west from Crewe to Manchester and the West Coast Main Line, and in the east from near Curdworth to Leeds and the East Coast Main Line.

IWA has objected to a number of the proposed changes to the previous (2013) route, in particular the proposals:

 

  • to move a rolling stock depot at Golborne to a site at Wimboldsley, north of Crewe, where it will impact the Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal with a wider crossing, and noise and visual impact for a 1km stretch alongside popular moorings.
  • to move the route in the Middlewich – Northwich area in Cheshire up to 800 metres westwards, impacting the Trent & Mersey Canal where a single crossing now becomes 3 crossings on very high (20 metres) viaducts and embankment; and the Middlewich Branch where a single crossing has now become a much wider crossing with 3 lines approaching the New Crofton Rolling Stock depot north of Crewe.
  • to increase the vertical height of the preferred route as it passes into Long Eaton and the ‘East Midlands Hub Station’, so increasing noise and visual impact on local residents and the Erewash Canal, which may also be impacted by a realignment of the M1 requiring a section of the canal to be diverted, which IWA believes is unnecessary.

IWA has also recorded reservations about a number of other proposals which could affect canals and rivers in Leicestershire, Derbyshire and West Yorkshire, including on the Ashby Canal near Measham, and the Chesterfield Canal at Staveley and Norwood.  Careful and substantial mitigation work will be required of HS2 Ltd at these and other locations.

IWA’s full response to the consultations, which closed on  March 9, 2017, can be found at: www.waterways.org.uk/news_campaigns/campaigns/consultation_responses/consultation_responses

IWA has worked with Canal & River Trust and local canal and restoration societies in developing and aligning its response to these proposals. It will continue to develop solutions to existing and new problems with them and with HS2 Ltd as the scheme moves ahead.

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