The council received seven written assurances at a Select Committee hearing in January from HS2 Ltd and accepted five and refused two of the offers in a bid to get fairer compensation for its residents.
The council had submitted a petition to the House of Commons Select Committee against additional provisions to the HS2 Hybrid Bill. The assurances included measures to reduce HS2 construction impacts, and compensation for the restoration of Ruislip and Uxbridge golf courses and Hillingdon Outdoor Activities Centre.
The council refused to accept the offer of compensation on the basis that it was far too low and it also rejected an assurance relating to temporary land take at the two golf courses, as it was directly linked to this offer.
However, the council accepted the other five assurances, as it was satisfied that they represented the best possible outcome for residents and took the view that it was extremely unlikely that the Select Committee would have decided to require HS2 Ltd to give the council anything more, particularly as it had allocated only a very short amount of time to hear the council's petition. The council also took into account the fact that the Select Committee would be hearing separate petitions from Ickenham and Harefield residents.
Read the HS2 assurances [2Mb] (Note: Document date should read 25 January 2016)
From Monday June 15 to Wednesday June 17, the council presented information to the MPs on the select committee about mitigation measures that could reduce the impact of the section of the HS2 rail link that runs through the London Borough of Hillingdon on residents and businesses in the area.
The Council is of the view that the impacts of HS2 will be devastating for the Colne Valley. It is still fighting hard to ensure that HS2 is rethought in its entirety. The lack of any plausible business case combined with the huge environmental and social impacts makes HS2 entirely unacceptable.
However, the Council recognises that if it does go ahead then it has to be as manageable as possible for those who have to live with the impending fall out.
The Council has therefore had no option but to pursue a better and more bearable design for HS2 in order to ensure that our communities are not needlessly impacted and that the project reflects the best result for the taxpayer.
The culmination of this work is the Peter Brett Associates (PBA) tunnel report. This is an independent study that shows that the tunnel is both feasible and a viable alternative. The following sets out answers to some of the initial questions posed by this report.
The brief was fairly complex but constrained by what could be changed and challenged through the Select Committee process. The Council is not in a position to seek fundamental route changes and therefore had to seek an alternative proposal on broadly the proposed route of HS2. Furthermore, it had to be mindful of the current tunnel proposals which includes the route from Old Oak Common through Northolt, to West Ruislip. Further to the west, the current proposal is to tunnel from the M25 to beyond Chalfont St Giles. To add further complexity, the Council is aware of neighbouring authorities' proposals to extend the Chiltern Tunnel.
The tunnel consultants have recommended that it is preferable to have an intervention gap between Old Oak Common and the Chiltern Tunnel.
As a consequence of its constrained position, the Council sought an extension of the Northolt tunnel so that HS2 would travel under West Ruislip, Ickenham, South Harefield and the main body of the Colne Valley. This is referred to as the Colne Valley extension.
The only place to emerge in order to reconnect with HS2 Ltd proposals was at West Hyde. This is an area already significantly damaged as a result of the Chiltern Tunnel works. The Colne Valley tunnel extension is proposed to be managed within the extent of the red line boundary of the main West Hyde construction compound.
If the Colne Valley is to be tunnelled, and the broad alignment consistent with existing proposals, there is no feasible or rational alternative than for it to emerge at the West Hyde main construction compound.
The Consultants were also tasked with accommodating the ancillary structures and construction compounds to ensure that the Council is not simply seeking to offload harm elsewhere. To that end, the Council acknowledges that HS2 Ltd will need a railhead in order to move excavated material away from the source. The Council has proposed an alternative location at West Ruislip Depot which removes the need for (a) thousands of lorry movements from local roads; (b) the dumping of material on 75 hectares of land; and (c) a construction factory of significant proportions in the Green Belt between Harvil Road and Breakspear Road South.
The Council met with Buckinghamshire County Council, South Buckinghamshire District Council and Three Rivers District Council to explain the intended brief. Residents were also informed through the ongoing petition engagement meetings of the proposed brief.
The Council had hoped for more time to communicate the findings of the reports. However, due to the recent changes to the Parliamentary Select Committee timetable, there was no choice but to publish the reports, and to seek comments from HS2 Ltd.
Simply put, no. The aim of the report is to demonstrate that a tunnel is feasible and viable. The reports have therefore provided an evidenced rebuttal to HS2 Ltd's conclusions that a tunnel was not suitable.
The reports though are a starting point. They are not the final proposals. They are aimed at enabling a more sensible discussion about how HS2 can cross the Colne Valley and the intention would be for HS2 Ltd to refine proposals.
The area impacted by HS2 Ltd's West Hyde construction compound already has a significant amount of harm. The Colne Valley tunnel extension will increase the amount of works in that area, but importantly it will save:
On balance, and combined with the constraints on what can be achieved, the increase in activity at the West Hyde depot, compared with the alternative wider spread destruction, is considered to be a more favourable option for the Colne Valley.
Nonetheless, the Council recognises that this is the 'least worst' option and that there will be impacts in the West Hyde area. The Council will therefore work closely with neighbouring authorities and the Colne Valley Partnership in securing a mitigation package for the West Hyde area that result in a net environmental and social benefit.
As stated previously, the Council is keen to hear your views on the tunnel proposals and in particular, to help inform any mitigation strategy for the West Hyde area. To that end, we welcome any views, and these should be e-mailed through to firstname.lastname@example.org
In the coming weeks we will follow up recent meetings with the neighbouring authorities ahead of appearances at the Select Committee.
Hillingdon Council has commissioned two independent studies that prove the viability of an HS2 tunnel through the Colne Valley to reduce the devastating impact of the high speed railway on west London.
The council has repeatedly requested that the whole route through the borough be a tunnel should the project go ahead. It commissioned the major new reports after HS2 Ltd refused to provide a robust appraisal of this option.
The first study, produced by Peter Brett Associates, proposes a 7km tunnel between West Hyde and West Ruislip.
This would be an extension to the proposed Northolt tunnel and would replace the current HS2 Ltd plan for a viaduct and surface section slicing through the Colne Valley.
There are huge technical benefits from tunnelling, the report concludes, and it will have significantly less impact on the environment, communities and businesses in the Colne Valley and beyond.
PBA also found there is greater certainty of delivery of the tunnel option compared to building a viaduct and concerns over local ground conditions and landfill contamination.
The report says: "There is a feasible tunnel solution which will allow HS2 to transit Colne Valley in a manner which avoids the extensive work proposed on the surface, the consequent negative construction impacts over a seven year period and the permanent operational noise and visual impacts."
The build cost of the tunnel is estimated at £1.16bn, which is just 5.8 per cent more than the current HS2 Ltd viaduct/surface option.
The second report commissioned by Hillingdon Council examines the wider negative impact of HS2 Ltd's proposal for a surface route to help measure its true cost.
Produced by Regeneris, it examines the economic, financial and environmental cost of HS2 on the borough as currently planned, which it values at between £41.9m at the lower end to as high as £157.5m.
Accepting the lower range of impacts, then the financial gap between the two schemes reduces to £22.13m, or just two per cent.
Taking into account the land and property compensation which has been disclosed by HS2 Ltd at over £54m the cost of delivering the tunnel would be considerably lower.
Hillingdon Outdoor Activities Centre (HOAC) offers people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds the opportunity to take part in a range of land and water-based activities and training. It is a registered environmental and educational organisation that has been in existence since the 1950s and gained charitable status in 1991. It works in partnership with Hillingdon Council and local sports clubs, taking pride in nurturing disadvantaged and disabled young people while remaining open to all.
Based just inside the M25 on the green belt, north of Uxbridge, HOAC's idyllic site has flourished over the years and now features a stunning 46 acre lake, fields, woodlands, a campsite, pedal karting track, archery range, climbing complex, boat hire facilities and more. It is a remarkable community asset, offering Londoners from as far afield as Westminster a taste of the countryside within easy reach of the city and also attracting visitors from the west, including Reading.
Around 22,000 young people flock to HOAC each year to take part in various activities - kayaking, raft-building, dragon boat racing, orienteering, caving, pond dipping, camping, rowing, windsurfing, to name but a few. Groups of adults are welcome too. Trained staff and volunteers at the centre supervise these activities, which work on many levels, offering physical, mental and team-building challenges that develop self-esteem, confidence and practical skills.
HOAC's fantastic location is one of its strengths, but it will also be its downfall. The HS2 rail link from London to Birmingham will devastate the area. Current plans require a 13m high viaduct through the HOAC site and two electricity substations in nearby fields, as well as the expansion of roads and dumping of earth excavated from tunnels. The impact of major construction work, coupled with the noise and disruption caused by high-speed trains travelling through the area every four minutes, would make it impossible for HOAC to remain open.
Jeff Creak, Principal of HOAC and Hillingdon resident, said:
"When we realised that HS2 would go right through HOAC, we thought it was ridiculous. How could they build a high speed rail link right in the heart of an area of natural beauty and destroy a unique community asset, given that they could tunnel or find another route?
"HOAC is a unique resource for West London and a big asset to the London Borough of Hillingdon. We see 22,000 kids each year, including schools and community groups. Loads of people come down simply to walk their dog or spend time with their families. We support a lot of clubs and volunteer organisations too, including rowing and archery clubs and groups for children with special needs. All of that will be wiped out.
"It can be all things to all people, but it is important to emphasise that HOAC is much more than just a leisure facility. There is a huge amount of educational value to be gained by participating in these activities. We actively nurture young people from a range of backgrounds, helping them to communicate better, work on personal development and achieve their goals. For some kids coming here is their first experience of the countryside, which is incredible really.
"So much has gone into making HOAC what it is today - time, money, expertise - and it's evolved over the years to be a cohesive and effective organisation that will very difficult to recreate elsewhere."
HS2 Action Alliance (HS2AA) and Hillingdon Council are delighted that their complaints concerning a failure to conduct a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) for HS2, which were made against the UK Government and European Commission, have both been found admissible by the Aarhus Compliance Committee.
The next step is hearing how the UK will justify its position to the Aarhus Committee given its duties under the international treaty. The European Commission is involved in these proceedings because the UK's Supreme Court contend that they are complying with the relevant European Union Directive.
Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said:
"I believe that the UK's Supreme Court's decision that a Strategic Environmental Assessment was not required in the HS2 consultation process is inconsistent with laws to protect the environment, leaving the UK in breach of the UN Treaty obligations under Aarhus. I am therefore delighted that the Aarhus Committee will be investigating this matter."
Hilary Wharf, Director, HS2AA commented
"This decision is a crucial step in getting the Government to face up to their environmental responsibilities that they have tried to evade by adopting the Hybrid Bill method of getting planning consent for HS2. We have always said that the UK Government was wrong but the UK courts have favoured the Government. This UN organisation, Aarhus, has now recognised that our case against the Government needs to be heard."
HS2Action Alliance (HS2AA) and Hillingdon Council are today (10 June) in the High Court to challenge the Government in respect of the controversial high speed rail project HS2.
Read the Council's submission to the HS2 Environmental Statement Consultation. Due to the size of this document it has been split it into three parts as follows:
It is important to bear in mind that the Supreme Court was not concerned with the actual merits of the HS2 project but rather the manner in which the Government was seeking to implement it.
It is clear from the judgement on 22 January that the judges accept that they had extremely difficult issues to grapple with. We are now actively exploring with our legal team the possibility of making a complaint to the European Commission.
View Councillor Ray Puddifoot's statement regarding the First Reading of the HS2 Hybrid Bill.
The was published along with the HS2 Hybrid Bill on 25 November and is out on consultation. The deadline for responding to this consultation is 24 January 2014.
The 15 councils opposing the high speed rail link, HS2, were in the High Court on 15 March 2013 to hear the result of the Judicial Review (JR) of the Government's decision to press ahead with the £34 billion project.
Councillor Martin Tett, Chairman of the 51m alliance and Leader of Buckinghamshire CC and Councillor Ray Puddifoot, Vice Chairman of the 51m alliance and Leader of Hillingdon Council, said:
"Firstly we are delighted that the judge agrees with the HS2 Action Alliance's challenge that the compensation consultation was fundamentally flawed. This decision will have a real impact on the lives of so many people whose homes and lives are currently blighted by this scheme.
"Secondly, we find the Court's reasoning for not supporting our (the local authorities) case against the failure to properly consult on the principle of the scheme totally bizarre. The government has argued, and the judge accepted, that the government hasn't made any decision yet on HS2 - not only on the northern 'Y' route but that it hasn't even taken a decision to proceed with the London to Birmingham section! For all who watched the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and other members of the Cabinet announcing the routes to Manchester and Leeds only a few weeks ago this must feel like some kind of 'parallel universe'! We will obviously appeal this decision as it defies common sense.
"We are also particularly concerned at the DfT's view, which the Judge accepted, that the business case and environmental impacts of HS2 don't need to be considered yet. His view is that Parliament may be able to fully consider the principle of HS2 and its environmental implications and if it doesn't then we can challenge this later. This defies reality and risks a very bad scheme being 'nodded through' the political process and then facing further legal challenge in several years time. By then vast amounts of taxpayers money will have been spent on a scheme which could be scrapped. It would be better to face up to the deficiencies in the decision making and the HS2 scheme, now."
Whilst disappointed, Hillingdon Council is not entirely surprised that the Court of Appeal has dismissed 51M's appeal.
The Appeal Judges have taken the view that it is for Parliament to decide whether HS2 proceeds and until such time as they do, no decision has been made. However, Hillingdon maintains its strong view that given the environmental harm that HS2 will undoubtedly cause, there has been both a fundamental and an obvious gap in the Government's environmental assessment of HS2. It has failed to identify and assess the potential significant effects on the environment and reasonable alternatives to HS2.
It is encouraging that the three Appeal judges were split on the issue of whether European law, which requires a Strategic Environmental Assessment [''SEA''] to be undertaken in specified circumstances, required the Government to carry out such an assessment in respect of HS2.
Lord Justice Sullivan delivered a strong dissenting judgement in which he said:
''If, as I have concluded, an SEA is required and there has not been substantial compliance with the SEA Directive, it would be difficult to think of a more egregious breach of the Directive given the scale of the HS2 project and the likely extent of its effects on the environment.''
Hillingdon, as part of the 51M Group, has therefore sought permission from the Court of Appeal to appeal to the Supreme Court, which is the highest Court in the land, on the SEA ground and an additional, and related, ground that the Hybrid Bill process is incompatible with another aspect of European law, the Environmental Impact Assessment Directive. Permission to appeal has been granted.
Council Leader Cllr Ray Puddifoot said, "We are closer to our people and our environment than those in Government and with the current HS2 proposal we have a scheme that is demonstrably an economic disaster and of no national benefit and accordingly we feel we have a duty of care to protect our people and our environment."
The Property and Compensation consultation impacts on residents and businesses, as well as Hillingdon Borough. HS2 Ltd have organised a series of Information Events along the line of route, which will provide an opportunity to discuss the contents of their proposals. A confirmed schedule of events will soon be posted on the consultation website and will be communicated to all Community Forum members. HS2 Ltd will be advertising their events in the local press. As a forum member, you will of course be most welcome to visit an event.
Date: Monday 3 December 2012
Venue: The Barn Hotel, West End Road, Ruislip, HA4 6JB
Opening times: 12:00 to 20:00
Safeguarding directions are intended to protect the line of route from conflicting developments and are an established practice for large infrastructure projects. The Safeguarding Consultation is aimed primarily at local planning authorities along the line of route, who will be aware of relevant planning issues in their areas and to whom the directions would apply.
The HS2 Consultation website (opens in a new window) includes full details of both consultations, including all relevant consultation documents, maps and factsheets. Details of how to respond to the consultations are also set out there.
Find out how you can get involved with Hillingdon Against HS2.
A judicial review against the HS2 proposals will be heard in the High Court from early December. The case is being brought by the council, along with other members of the 51M group. Other cases brought by action groups also opposed to HS2 are also being heard at the same time.
To get involved in the campaign against HS2, speak to Hillingdon Against HS2 by following them on Twitter, @HAHS2, on Facebook at Ruislip Against HS2, or visit the website.
You can also email info@hillingdon-against-HS2.com.
Councillor Ray Puddifoot's statement regarding the 51M Group
The proposed HS2 scheme is a monumental folly and an example of how to get it wrong in practically every aspect from the enormous cost to the transport needs of the country, to the environmental damage and completely ignoring the views expressed by the public in the consultation process.
However even the Government is not above the law but it is always a matter of regret when as local politicians we have to resort to using the law to protect the people, and the environment from such economically disastrous vanity projects.
Councillor Ray Puddifoot's statement regarding the Government's HS2 decision - May I start by making it quite clear that this authority is not against the concept of High Speed Rail travel and neither are any of the other 17 authorities that make up the 51M Group.
On Tuesday of this week The Secretary of State for Transport announced the Governments preferred route for the proposed High Speed Rail link between London and Birmingham with a future extension to Leeds, Manchester and a spur link to Heathrow Airport. Read more
As you may have seen in the news on 10 January, a new high-speed rail line between London and Birmingham has been given the go-ahead by Government.
The council and its partners have opposed the proposed route which will travel through Hillingdon with a 2.75-mile (4km) tunnel built in Ruislip.
A spur linking to Heathrow airport will not be built until the second phase, which will see the line continued to Leeds and Manchester.
High Speed Rail: Investing in Britain’s Future [573kb] - Government's decision
The Leader of the council, Cllr Ray Puddifoot, is doing a number of media interviews today setting out Hillingdon's continued opposition to the plans.
A statement issued to the BBC earlier read; Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said: "This is not in the best interests of the country and every MP should ask themselves if £51m for every parliamentary constituency offers good value for money in the current economic climate."
Hillingdon will continue to work hard on behalf of residents to ensure that HS2 does not go ahead in its current form and will work alongside other local authorities in the 51M group to put pressure on the Government to change its plans.
We will update these pages as and when new information is made available and the 51M group website also contains regular updates.
As the consultation finished on 29 July the council would like to thank all residents who took the time to complete a response card, give a personal response or took part in local action group meetings and events.
Hillingdon's official response to the Government's HS2 consultation was agreed by Cabinet on 28 July and was submitted to the Department for Transport/HS2 Ltd along with the thousands of residents' response cards.
Hillingdon Council has published a draft response to the Government's HS2 consultation.
If approved by the Cabinet on Thursday 28 July, Hillingdon's response will be submitted to the DfT on Friday.
Hillingdon Council has welcomed a report by the Institute of Economic Affairs which branded HS2 as 'economically flawed'.
The report found the £32 billion proposal for a high speed rail line would cost each tax payer £1,000 and described the proposals as a 'political vanity project based on bogus assumptions'.
The Leader of the Council, Cllr Ray Puddifoot, said: "This report re-enforces what we have been saying all along. The proposed route would significantly impact on our residents' quality of life while destroying the environment for no real economical benefit."
The report added that government estimates for demand on the route were optimistic, significant environmental and social costs had not been included in the assessment of the economic case for HS2 and described the proposed high speed link as a 'recipe for disaster'.
IEA Deputy Editorial Director Dr Richard Wellings, one of the report's authors, said:
"HS2 is another political vanity project - like Concorde and the Millennium Dome - being ploughed ahead with complete disregard for properly thought through commercial prospects or the mounting opposition to it.
"Its environmental credentials are questionable, its projected passenger figures suspect, and its proposed regenerative effects highly dubious."
To see a copy of the report visit Institute of Economic Affairs website
See Cabinet report - Thursday 16 June 2011 for Hillingdon's response to HS2
Hillingdon Council is giving residents the opportunity to complete a simple response card on the proposed route for HS2. These cards, which are being sent inside the council's Hillingdon People magazine, must be returned by Friday 1 July. You can also
The freepost cards will be used to gauge resident feeling towards central government plans for a high speed rail link between London and Birmingham, which would run through the borough if approved.
Residents should still complete the government's consultation document by 29 July in order to have their say. This can be downloaded from highspeedrail.dft.gov.uk or call 0300 321 1010 for a hard copy.
Leader of the Council, Cllr Ray Puddifoot said: "The proposed route is the worst choice financially and environmentally and would almost certainly see the third runway issue back on agenda. While we are not against the concept of high speed travel, the proposed route would significantly affect the quality of life of our residents."
If you do not receive a card please contact the council on 01895 250 828.
The council's maps of the Government's proposed route, details of the HS2 Ltd meeting at Winston Churchill Hall next week as well information on how residents can respond can be found on our .
More than 250 residents most directly affected by the proposals attended a meeting with council leaders and officers at Ruislip High School.
The council presented the most up-to-date information it had about the proposals and how they may affect local people.
Notes from the presentations and questions, as well as response suggestions and contact details for the consultation
The online booking form for the residents meeting is now closed. Further information and updates will be posted here.
The Secretary of State has published details of the proposals for a National High Speed Rail Network.
The council is currently examining these proposals to asses how they will impact on the borough and will publish its response to the consultation once it is complete.
Residents living in the 368 properties that are most directly affected by the proposals have been invited to a meeting with the council later this month while a public meeting will be held later in the consultation period for a wider audience. Details of this meeting will be published here as soon as they are finalised.
HS2 Ltd, the company leading the public consultation, will be visiting Winston Churchill Hall on Wednesday 30 and Thursday 31 March from 8am until 8pm with an exhibition of their plans. (It should be noted that these exhibitions are not connected to the council in any way)
Details of the HS2 roadshow and the full consultation details: highspeedrail.dft.gov.uk
Any queries related to the council's response can be emailed to email@example.com
The following joint press release has been issued to the national and local media by Hillingdon Council and other local authorities along the route.
I once described the previous government's plans for a third runway at Heathrow as the most damaging threat to Hillingdon's environment since the Second World War. We were able to defeat that proposal but now the Coalition Government appears to be favouring plans for a high speed train route which would bring an equally damaging threat to Hillingdon.
The approach being taken is very much the same as with R3, being promote the scheme as a done deal and start blighting the area with the issue of property purchase bonds or similar for those directly effected. Consultation will end on 31 July although no start date has yet been announced but this is seen as a formality as the consultation will include large areas of the north of the country who will vote in big numbers to support the concept of high speed rail although, in truth, they have no real interest in the route taken to get there. The government will promote this support as in favour of the proposed route through the Chilterns.
I have been meeting with council leaders and transport cabinet members from all along the proposed route and a strong coalition has been formed. We will all contribute to a fighting fund, Hillingdon will commit £135,000 now and more as required.
May I assure residents that our resolve to defeat this proposal is as resolute as that which saw off R3, the closing of Harefield Hospital and a few years back now the Warner Bros theme park on Hillingdon House Farm.
Without a shadow of a doubt both the economic and environmental case for the proposed route are accepted, even by the government, as too weak to justify going ahead with this scheme but, as with R3 they will push it forward on a "national interest " basis. Or rather they will try! Sooner or later governments of whatever political colour will come to realise that "national interest" includes the people and the environment of this country.
This HS2 route is a concept not a done deal and it is a poor concept at that. Together in Hillingdon and with those all along the proposed route we will defeat this ill conceived destruction of property and our environment.
Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council
Cllr Keith Burrows, Cabinet Member for Planning, Transportation and Recycling, undertook an interview recently with the BBC's Politics Show at the Hillingdon Outdoor Activities Centre (HOAC) to talk about the effect the Government's proposed high speed rail route would have on Hillingdon residents.
He used HOAC as an example of a local and regional resource that would be forced to close but also spoke of the economic and national transport policy concerns the council has, saying that other options had not been explored thoroughly.
The interview is due to form part of The Politics Show programme on Sunday 6 February 2011 at 12:00 on BBC One.
The council is continuing to support residents who wish to oppose the Government's preferred high speed rail route as we await the publication of the consultation which is due this month. We will be analysing the full proposals carefully and will be providing residents with clear signposts and links from this site to the relevant consultation documents as soon as they are published.
On 21 December the Government published its preferred high speed rail route and announced that the consultation period was expected to begin in February. The preferred route can be seen in detail on the Department for Transport website at www.dft.gov.uk.
Cllr Ray Puddifoot said: "We are not opposed to the concept of high speed rail, which as part of an integrated transport system, is in the national interest.
Hillingdon Council's held it's first public meeting on the High Speed 2 with hundreds of residents attending to hear more about the Government's plans.
The council wrote to thousands of residents who may be affected by the plans for a high speed rail route informing them of a meeting taking place to share some of the information already publicly available, also to providing an insight into some of the planning options.
The meeting, lead by Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council and Jales Tippell, Head of Transportation and Planning Policy, also outlined what the council will be doing to resist any proposal that would harm the borough as well as informed residents of the options available to them to ensure that their views are heard.
"We are pleased that the government is proposing to link HS2 with HS1 as that could persuade more people to travel by rail rather than air if and when HS2 reaches Manchester and beyond.
"However we have a lot of questions about the impact of HS2 on the borough and our residents and what the exact route will be as it is not clear from the information we have.
"The confirmation that a Heathrow spur will be included, but with no details of when it will be built or where the station will be, is also of great concern."
The Government are due to announce the formal consultation period next week in the Houses of Parliament. It is expected that the consultation period will be early next year and will be an opportunity for residents to ensure that their views or objections are heard.
The Leader of the Council, Cllr Ray Puddifoot met with the Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP, the Secretary of State for Transport with fellow leaders from other councils whose boroughs would be affected by the current preferred route for High Speed Rail 2.
The Leader stressed his objection to the preferred route and confirmed that Hillingdon would challenge any plans that would have a negative impact on the borough.
Hillingdon Council's first public meeting on High Speed 2 was very well attended with hundreds of residents braving the cold weather to hear more about the Government's plans for a High Speed Rail link to Birmingham.
The council has called the meeting to share with local people some of the information already publicly available as well as to provide an insight into some of the planning options in a clear and accessible way.
The council wrote to thousands of residents who may be affected by the plans for a high speed rail route through the borough with the meeting arranged ahead of the Government's consultation announcement due this month.
The meeting, lead by Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council and Jales Tippell, Head of Transportation and Planning Policy, also outlined what the council will be doing to resist any proposal that would harm the borough as well as informed residents of the options available to them to ensure that their views are heard.
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