HS2 Campaign Overview

IWA has been campaigning to mitigate the effect of the £42 billion HS2 high speed rail line between London and the Midlands.

See the latest HS2 Updates

Phase 1: In 2011, the Government announced its preferred route for phase 1 of HS2 which showed several canal crossing points. IWA Lichfield Branch identified the major impact that the proposed HS2 route would have on the area around Fradley Junction in March 2011, and subsequently identified an alternative route. IWA then worked with the local waterway groups to refine proposals and in September 2013, agreed with CRT to commission renowned engineering consultancy Hyder Consulting (UK) Ltd to develop a report to confirm the viability of our alternative route. The report demonstrated a credible route, which had significantly less impact on the area and the potential to reduce construction costs by around £50 million. IWA submitted its response to this consultation in February 2014, which included the report, and its Petition to the House of Commons against the High Speed Rail (London – West Midlands) Bill in May 2014. On 1st October the Goverment announced its decision to adopt the re-alignment proposed by IWA and CRT. Find out more about IWA's involvement with phase 1 and the alternative route feasibility study in the area around Fradley Junction.

Phase 2: An initial preferred route for phase 2 from Birmingham to Manchester, and Birmingham to Leeds was announced in July 2013. IWA has worked with canal societies, CRT and others to identify waterway issues with phase 2, and potential solutions. Wherever possible these were aligned to present a single ‘waterways’ response, along with any proposals to address these concerns which HS2 can take forward. IWA's response to the phase 2 consultation was submitted at the end of January 2014. Find out more about phase 2 or download IWA's response to the phase 2 consultation as a PDF (405 KB).

On 17th July 2017 the Transport Secretary Chris Grayling introduced the Phase 2a High Speed Rail (West Midlands to Crewe) Bill to the House of Commons seeking the powers to construct HS2 from the West Midlands to just south of Crewe and planned to open in 2027.  Read IWA's thoughts on the Bill

The Secretary of State also announced his decision on the outstanding sections of the Phase 2b route to Manchester and Leeds and confirmed a number of changes to the route.  (IWA previously responded to consultations on the route in 2016 and 2013.)  See IWA's thoughts on the positives and negatives of this latest decision and how the decision connects with our concerns stated in the 2016 consultation response.

Hybrid Bill: A hybrid Bill has been published which would grant very wide powers to the Secretary of State for Transport to construct Phase 1. IWA will be looking to, and if appropriate working with, CRT to ensure it has a comprehensive undertaking in place to protect the waterways in its care, and where necessary similar undertakings are in place for other affected waterway interests. Find out more about the hybrid Bill.