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We’re in the news: Independent on Sunday investigation into HS2

Thursday 31st January

We’re in the news: Independent on Sunday investigation into HS2

Following the announcement that Toton Sidings would be the site for a station complex serving both Nottingham and Derby on the proposed High Speed Rail 2, we are featured alongside 7 of our sister Wildlife Trusts in a special investigation report by the Independent on Sunday newspaper.

The report, published on 3rd February, supports our view that the full impact of environmental damage and loss of wildlife habitat needs to be considered as part of the HS2 consultation process.

Click here to read the Independent on Sunday's special HS2 investigation report

There are 8 Wildlife Trusts across the country affected by the proposed route. We are currently waiting to see if the data it has provided on important wildlife-rich areas has been taken into account following a detailed analysis to assess the new route’s impacts. We must learn the lessons from High Speed Rail Phase One and take full account of environmental issues with this scheme.  New development, even sustainable transport schemes and the move to a low carbon economy must not be achieved at the expense of the natural environment.

Toton Sidings lies in the heart of the Erewash Valley where we have been working with partners to secure investment in high quality public green spaces and the restoration of key wildlife habitats. The likely scale of any new track and station facilities for High Speed 2 has the potential to damage a number of designated wildlife sites and Local Nature Reserves.

Decisions must always be based on the best available environmental evidence and we feel strongly that the scheme should be in line with the Government’s own Natural Environment White Paper’s ambition to restore our natural environment. If Toton Sidings is to be the site of a High Speed 2 facility then every effort should therefore be made to prevent the loss of wildlife habitat and to ensure that ambitious plans to restore the landscape of the Erewash Valley can still be realised. 

The Government is pressing ahead with plans for HS2 whilst still awaiting the outcome of five Judicial Reviews being held into HS2 Phase One. We firmly believe that any scheme that goes ahead must avoid further erosion of England’s much depleted natural capital.

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