The following consultations relevant to our area are currently open:
Equality Impact Assessment SMR closed 11.45pm Friday 29 September 2017
Environmental Impact Assessment SMR closed 11.45pm Friday 29 September 2017
Rolling Stock Depot (Stourton) closes 11.45pm Thursday 12 October 2017
Have your say before it’s too late!
HS2 Public Information event at Oulton Institute
12 noon to 5pm Saturday 15 September 2017
This is your chance to drop in and examine their latest plans for our area and the proposed depot near Arla.
Make the most of this opportunity to express your views on their plans!
Demand more and longer tunnels, instead of the huge viaducts, to remove the blight to our valley. If they tunnel both the Leeds branch line and main line from the M62 it would avoid all the destruction and protect our green setting.
SOWHAT will also be available at the Institute (in the Committee room, first left inside the front door) all afternoon and have arranged for the following representatives to be present:
Karen Bruce (Labour Cllr) 12-2pm
Kieth Wakefield (LCC) 12-1pm
Andrew Hall (LCC) 12-2pm (Head of Transportation)
Dylan Brown (Green Party) From 12 noon
Oulton & Woodlesford Neighbourhood Forum will also be in attendance.
Have your say before it’s too late!
Update for those that missed the above event:
The current HS2 proposed route will destroy our area. Don’t let this happen. There are better alternatives. HS2 must tunnel the entire section through LS26 on both the branch and main lines. Go have your say. Find out about the consultations and send them your written objections.
Tuesday 19 September, 2pm to 8pm
Thorpe Park Hotel & Spa, 1150 Century Way, Leeds, LS15 8ZB
Wednesday 20 September, 2pm to 8pm
Thwaite Mills Watermill, Thwaite Lane, Leeds, LS10 1RP
HS2 recently announced plans for a maintenance depot opposite Arla and next to the M1.
This will clearly need connectivity to the HS2 tracks and is likely to cause further disruption to local rail services while these connections are made and realignment takes place. There are currently no estimates as to the severity or period of disruption anticipated.
The depot will be operational 24 hours a day.
A consultation on the proposed depot is currently open and runs until 12 October 2017 – raise your objections and concerns now!
Today saw a flood of documents released from HS2.
Our initial comments and links to their files can be found on our facebook discussion:
In short (so far):
- The route hasn’t changed through our area, the tunnels and viaducts are as bad as ever
- HS2 have proposed a depot next to the M1 opposite Arla (Skelton Grange / Stourton) instead of Crofton
- SOWHAT achieved a small victory with improved compensation arrangements at tunnel mouths
SOWHAT and Woodlesford residents clearly made a significant impact, this is reflected in the HS2 consultation reports, but HS2 don’t justify their position and haven’t reduced the devastation they will cause to our area. Indeed, the disruption to existing rail services is likely to be worse during the construction period with the addition of the depot.
Chris Grayling (Secretary of State for Transport) failed to deliver the promised update to the House of Commons today and instead HS2 released many documents which don’t appear to offer much by way of justification for decisions taken. Grayling has been heavily criticised and the Speaker has promised to summon him to appear tomorrow to answer “extensive questions”.
SOWHAT asked the five Parliamentary candidates to complete a survey to inform the community of their position on HS2. Three written and one video response have been received.
You can view the individual responses here:
The video response is here:
Keep in mind that the viaduct is 28-36m high, 2200m long, and construction in our area is likely to take 7 or more years. You can read more details about the impact of HS2 here: HS2-Impact-Brief-v2.4.pdf
Also from the Constituency Election Hustings last Saturday run by Rothwell Catholic Church, we have the following report:
Conservative: Alec asserted his support for the project and the benefits he thought it would bring to Leeds. If it doesn’t come here, he says, then all the business will go to Manchester. KPMG have told him they will move there. He does not support the proposed route and stated that the reroute via tunnel is down to his campaigning.
Labour: David said he wants to see the Church Fenton spur abandonned, and that he wants HS2 to open an office in Leeds.
Liberal: Stewart wants a fairer deal for local people, the impact being too heavy, but talked about HS2 in principle as be progress.
Yorkshire: Matthew stated he was against HS2 and would prefer money to be invested in an East / West line across the Pennines.
Green: Dylan spoke eloquently against the HS2 project and said that they are working on a local transport plan that would reopen track closed under Beeching. He has had a long career working in the rail industry.
Note: These consultations closed on 9 March 2017
HS2’s consultation information, forms and guidance can be found on the following links:
Phase 2b Route Refinement Consultation *
Phase 2b Property Compensation Consultation
* NOTE: The route consultation form was not designed for our area and doesn’t make sense in the context of our location. We suggest you write a letter (or email), drawing on our templates where appropriate and adding your own content. Then send to HS2 as detailed below.
SOWHAT’s Support Documents
You can also view a copy of our HS2 Update (PDF) presentation and download our consultation template response support documents to assist you in compiling your responses. Our template responses make it easy for everyone to get involved but it is, however, important to personalise your response to make it individual – this carries far more weight when evaluated.
Responding to HS2 public consultations
The consultations close on 9 March 2017. Email responses can be submitted until 23:45pm on the final day of the consultation. Paper responses must be posted on or before the final day of the consultation.
Please only use the channels listed below when responding to the consultations. HS2 do not guarantee that responses sent to any other addresses will be included in the consultations.
Respond to the ROUTE consultation in the following ways:
Email your response to email@example.com
Post your response to the following FREEPOST address. Please use capital letters when writing the address. No additional address information is required and you do not need a stamp: FREEPOST HS2 PHASE 2B ROUTE REFINEMENT CONSULTATION
Complete an online response form that is available at the following website: https://route2b.dialoguebydesign.net * SOWHAT suggest you don’t use this method as the form isn’t designed for our area, instead write a letter or email
Respond to the PROPERTY COMPENSATION consultation in the following ways:
Email your response to firstname.lastname@example.org
Post your response to the following FREEPOST address. Please use capital letters when writing the address. No additional address information is required and you do not need a stamp: FREEPOST HS2 PHASE 2B PROPERTY CONSULTATION
Complete an online response form that is available at the following website: https://Property2b.dialoguebydesign.net
Today we held a public information meeting at Oulton Institute to update everyone on HS2’s current proposals, provide feedback from our meeting with them last week, and to set out what everyone needs to do urgently to respond to the public consultations.
To secure the future of our villages we need our voice to be heard. Only by generating a significant volume of responses will HS2 be compelled to listen. This could well be our last opportunity to influence their plans.
Responses must be submitted before their 9 March 2017 deadline. Read more…
We also encourage everyone to sign our petition and to write to our MP, Councillors and LCC.
You can view a copy of our HS2 Update (PDF) presentation. We also showed videos from our drone flying at the height of the train, and walked through our template response documents.
The HS2 route consultation was not designed for our area and their response form doesn’t make much sense for us. It is better to write a letter (or email), drawing on our templates where appropriate and adding your own content, and then address this to HS2 as part of their “Phase 2b Route Consultation“.
The property compensation consultation form and details may be used as supplied, although you are also entitled to supplement or submit your response by letter or email if you wish. You can also submit your response online.
Click the graphic below for a copy of today’s presentation.
Click on the images to enlarge. Although it’s not strictly to scale the illustration above gives a good idea of the impact on Woodlesford. The tunnel mouth cutting is around 140m wide (because there are in fact TWO tunnels, one for each track), and the track depth below ground level is about 15m. The viaduct height can be seen on the profile below which is to scale. The red house is just over 7m high, the size of a typical UK house. The viaduct is four times that height at Swillington Organic Farm!
Click these links for more images and videos
Print a poster for your home or car window to help spread the word..
Dates for your diary…
HS2 Phase 2b Property Consultation and the Phase 2b Route Refinement Consultation events:
Saturday 21 January Woodlesford
Blackburn Hall, Commercial Street, Rothwell, Leeds, LS26 0AW 10am – 5pm
Monday 23 January Garforth
Thorpe Park Hotel & Spa, Thorpe Suite 1150 Century Way, Leeds, LS15 8ZB 12pm – 8pm
Tuesday 24 January Hunslet
Royal Armouries Museum, Armouries Drive, Leeds, LS10 1LT 12pm – 8pm
Why is this not in the village again? Ask HS2!
Note that HS2 are likely to have different information displays at the Garforth and Hunslet events, so you are best to attend on the 21st if you can, but if you can’t make that… the others are better than nothing.
Further details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hs2-phase-2b-property-consultation-and-the-phase-2b-route-refinement-consultation-events-january-february-2017