Growth Track 360: Welcomes Royal Assent for HS2 Phase 2a Act (West Midlands to Crewe); and Calls for next HS2 Hybrid Bill to provide connectivity for the region

12 February 2021

Local authority leaders from North Wales, the Wirral and Cheshire West and Chester in the Growth Track 360 partnership have welcomed today's announcement that the HS2 Phase 2a Act has passed into law.

The Act enables extension of the new HS2 railway from Birmingham to Crewe, adding to the earlier Phase 1 Act which facilitated current construction work between London and Birmingham.

Growth Track 360 supports the delivery of national (UK) strategic rail improvements to connect the area’s communities in Wales and England to:
  • HS2 at a Crewe Hub Station;
  • HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail at a Warrington interchange; and
  • Central Manchester and Manchester Airport.
To these ends, in December 2020 Growth Track 360 supported proposals from the UK Secretary of State for Transport for the route specified in the HS2 Phase 2b Hybrid Bill (Crewe to Manchester and West Midlands to Leeds) to include:
  • Establishing a new Crewe North Junction with a supporting upgrade of the Crewe Depot; and
  • Design changes to the proposed HS2 stations at Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Airport.
Growth Track 360 Chair - Councillor Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester said: "HS2 is a transformational project for the UK but it is essential that it is configured to bring benefits well beyond its core route by facilitating through services running onto existing railway lines serving Cheshire and North Wales."

Growth Track 360 Vice Chair - Councillor Ian Roberts, Leader of Flintshire - said: "North Wales, Cheshire and the Wirral have tremendous potential for generating the high technology jobs of the future. Securing robust rail connections to cities on the HS2 route will help us to realise this vision, and we look forward to seeing the next parliamentary bill for both Northern Powerhouse Rail and HS2 providing these."

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