In response to the HS2 Growth Taskforce’s interim report Lawrie Quinn, Chairman of the Railway Engineers Forum said:

Today’s welcome interim report into HS2 from Lord Deighton and his HS2 Growth Taskforce has thrown down the gauntlet to the UK construction and engineering industry. As we showed with the Olympics, the industry is ready and waiting to deliver. The HS1 project shows the potential of infrastructure projects to give a new generation of Britons world-class skills they can go and sell to the world and to bring about a lasting legacy for jobs and communities. HS2 will have a similar transformational effect.

HS2 is vital for connecting our cities together, and for dealing with the capacity crunch on our railways. Huge amounts of money have been spent on regeneration projects in major cities such as Leeds, Manchester and Birmingham, but because we’ve never connected them up they haven’t realised their full economic potential.

As Doug Oakervee’s Bradshaw lecture yesterday pointed out, the lack of capacity and connectivity between our biggest cities means that either a new high speed line or a whole new motorway network is needed to bring our infrastructure back up to speed. HS2 is the clear solution; we just need to get on with it.