Funds needed to stop HS2 in its tracks

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THE Chiltern Countryside Group is aiming to raise £15,000 to help bring about a judicial review against the government’s HS2 decision.

The move is backed by the Stop HS2 national campaign group – and has infuriated supporters of the scheme who have dubbed it a ‘colossal waste of time and money’.

Campaigners must launch a review by April for it to be valid.

Sue Yeomans, the chairman of the Chiltern’s group, said: “People have a choice. Pay for HS2 now and over decades through taxes, property blight and losses in business – or pledge some of their own money to help fund the legal process which could overturn the government’s decision.”

Stop HS2 campaign co-ordinator Joe Rukin said: “We obviously believe that the consultation process was completely flawed and the decision to go ahead was totally irrational. However, to be able to prove either of those facts in a court of law, we need evidence.

“Obviously the campaign and the other organisations have collected a lot of evidence, but we want to make sure no stone is left unturned.”

Lucy James, of the Campaign for High Speed Rail, said: “Going down the route of a judicial review is a colossal waste of time and money. If councils along the route foot some of the bill, then in some instances this money could be coming directly from the taxpayer. Instead of a long drawn-out process through the courts, people from both sides should be working together to ensure that we build the best railway possible.”