HS2 Ltd, the company building Britain’s new low-carbon high-speed railway, confirmed today (03 July 2023) that a second set of proposed changes to the High Speed Rail (Crewe – Manchester) Bill, has been introduced to Parliament.

The submission of Additional Provision 2 (AP2) is an important milestone in the parliamentary process. It keeps HS2 on track to open the Crewe – Manchester extension between 2035 and 2041, ensuring zero carbon rail services extend to Manchester’s two new dedicated HS2 stations at Manchester Airport and Piccadilly.

HS2’s construction is currently supporting more than 28,500 jobs and over 3,000 UK-based businesses, including 190 in the Northwest, have already won work supplying materials, products and services.

The High Speed Rail (Crewe – Manchester) Bill, which seeks powers to extend and operate the new high-speed network to Manchester, was submitted to Parliament in January 2022. The first set of proposed changes to the Bill, known as Additional Provision 1 (AP1), was introduced six months later.

Changes to hybrid bills aren’t uncommon and reflect the ongoing work that HS2 Ltd undertakes to ensure it builds the best railway in the best way. This includes developing the design for the railway, acting on new information, and assessing feedback from individuals and communities affected by the construction proposals.

One year on from the submission of AP1, communities are now invited to view the latest set of proposed changes and have their say on the supporting documentation through a public consultation.

Stephen SmithHead of Consultation and Engagement for HS2’s Phase 2b programme said:

“Extending the HS2 network to Manchester will vastly improve connectivity between the UK’s major towns and cities, while freeing up vital capacity on the existing rail network for more local and regional rail services.

“This latest set of design changes reflects our ongoing commitment to minimise disruption during the construction and operational phases. Feedback from communities plays a vital role in the design process and we encourage people to have their say before the consultation closes.”

The public consultation focuses on two key documents which outline any new, different or removed significant environmental effects resulting from the proposed changes. The consultation opens at 09:00 on 4 July and closes 11:45 on 31 August 2023.  Supporting documentation and information about the consultation can be found at www.hs2.org.uk/crewe-manchester

Information about the changes proposed in AP2, for each of the seven community areas, is published on the HS2 website.

In some cases, the changes proposed in AP2 require additional land and powers. HS2’s community engagement team is already engaging with individuals and communities affected by the proposals. Directly affected parties can petition against the changes. The petitioning period will open tomorrow (4 July 2023) and continue until 15 August. More information about how to petition can be found on the Bill’s Parliamentary web page.