Call for a truly national network of high speed rail services

8 February, 2017

Greengauge 21 has responded to the National Infrastructure Commission’s consultation about the UK’s infrastructure needs, calling for the connectivity gains that HS2 brings to be extended across the nation as a whole over the next 30 years. Discussing evidence submitted in the response, Director Jim Steer said: “this can be conceived of as an inter-city or inter-regional rail strategy for 2050. It needs to Read on »

Peninsula Rail Task Force report targets resilience, faster journeys and connectivity

25 January, 2017

The Peninsula Rail Task Force report published in November 2016 targets resilience, faster journeys and connectivity. It rightly wants to see London-Plymouth journey times cut to 2h15. But it down-plays the case for re-opening the ‘northern route’ that serves Tavistock and Okehampton.

In 2015, Greengauge 21 set out the key sustainability arguments for re-establishing this important rail connection. Our new report Peninsula Rail Task Force report targets resilience challenges assumptions in the Task Force’s analysis and argues it would be wrong to postpone investment until the 2030s. By then, the existing line via Dawlish will have been subject to flooding disruption on multiple occasions. A ‘high road’ is needed – for resilience to adverse weather – and to open up rail access to Devon and NE Cornwall.

This should include a new cut-off to bypass Cowley Bridge junction, which – astonishingly enough – was reported as being closed due to flooding on the very day the Task Force’s report was published.

HS2 Employment and Training Opportunities – Latest Report

20 September, 2016

Updating earlier work for for Greengauge 21, Albion Economics has released projections of the jobs and a apprenticeships that HS2 Phase 1 will create. The report explains that 14,400 of these jobs lie in works already out for tender for the main civil engineering works.

The report can be accessed here: HS2 Employment Report

Linking North to South

2 June, 2016

A review of the HS2 Ltd report – Broad Options for Upgraded and High Speed railways to the North of England and Scotland

The 400-mile journey between the Scottish cities of Glasgow & Edinburgh and London is set to become a battleground between short-haul airlines and high-speed rail. Ministers in Westminster and Holyrood have now agreed on a 3-hour journey time target by rail.

Greengauge 21 is calling for this target to be delivered in 2027, by which time HS2 will have reached Crewe. In a new report that reviews work done to date, it sets out how an intelligent combination of bypasses and upgrades to existing lines north of Crewe can achieve this aim.

You can access the report here: Linking North to South

Rural Reconnections: the social benefits of rail reopening Exeter – Okehampton – Tavistock – Plymouth: a case study

16 June, 2015

A new study carried out by Greengauge 21 for the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has examined the social consequences of re-opening the railway between Plymouth and Exeter via Tavistock and Okehampton, and found there is a good case for a local service: Rural reconnections: the social benefits of rail reopening

The route would also serve to keep Plymouth and Cornwall connected at times when the route via Dawlish is disrupted by sea/weather conditions.

A critical factor is the link between rail service provision and additional housing. The research shows Read on »