The Independent London Newspaper
25th March 2017

Lord Andrew Adonis appears flummoxed as he is asked to apologise to Camden residents over HS2

    Lord Andrew Adonis and Stanley Johnson went head-to-head over HS2 on LBC

    Lord Andrew Adonis and Stanley Johnson went head-to-head over HS2 on LBC

    Published: 5 January, 2014
    By TOM FOOT

    LABOUR Lord Andrew Adonis appeared flummoxed after being asked to apologise to Camden residents for the HS2 project live on air.

    The shadow infrastructure minister, who lives next to Regent's Park, was a guest on LBC radio on Saturday.

    The show pitched Boris Johnson's father Stanley Johnson, former Labour Mayor Ken Livingstone and transport expert Christian Wolmar in a lively debate on HS2.

    Martin Sheppard, an anti-HS2 campaigner who lives in Primrose Hill, phoned in to the programme and demanded: “I would invite Lord Adonis to apologise to people of Camden.”

    Despite having already detailed a series of statistics and arguments in support of HS2 in a wide-ranging debate, Lord Adonis suddenly fell silent.

    The line crackled and there was a long pause until Mr Johnson, whose home is six metres away from the proposed construction site, told Lord Adonis: “I would say that if Lord Adonis of Camden would visit Camden more often he would realise the extraordinary anger which is felt in this part of London. My proposal, Lord Adonis, is you put your team on the Old Oak Common option.”

    Lord Adonis, in another show of selective hearing, dodged the question about stopping the line in west London that would spare homes and businesses in Camden from 15 years of blight.

    He replied: “I visit Camden all the time, I live on the edge of Camden. So I know the issues well. The golden rule of infrastructure projects, is that everyone wants the benefits and no one wants the costs. The idea you could save £50billion by not doing HS2 is illusory. The mainline to London needs to be renewed and the costs [of HS2] would be about the same if we upgraded the Victorian railway. We would get better value for money by building a new railway. That's why Parliament voted by 10 to 1 in favour of it three or four months ago.”

    Mr Johnson admitted he had an “axe to grind” because the £50billion project will go through his front garden” but warned there was the current compensation on offer to homeowners within the M25 was unfair.

    When asked by Mr Livingstone whether Mr Johnson was “suggesting a Conservative Government was giving out better compensation in Conservative areas?”, Mr Johnson said: “I am 100 per cent suggesting that.”

    Mr Livingstone added: “I always thought the scale of development in Euston will be devastating. I said a few years ago that the best thing was to keep it in the tunnel and let people get off at Euston, but carry it on to Waterloo. Trains could come in from all over south east and across England.”

    HS2 recently announced they were calling a “pause” to design work for Euston Station because of a gap in funding.

     

    Comments

    Whoever builds hs2 will be vilified for the years to come

    bybhalf of london and half the country. This is an 80bn project with tea negative ROI. At the time where the NHS and benefits are cut, this will never be forgiven to this in charge of the decision making. Namely Cameron and Miliband.

    Exactly!!!

    Exactly!!!

    "Where else could it be"? At

    "Where else could it be"? At Smithfield of course, much closer to central London and directly across the road from the new entrance to Farringdon station. Farringdon is the crossroads of Thameslink and Crossrail and would allow onward travel without clogging up the underground lines. Smithfield is largely disused and due for redevelopment. It could be as successful as the restoration of St Pancras. Platforms can be built under Smithfield and under the streets both sides.
    Meanwhile, HS2 struggle to find a viable plan for rebuilding Euston. Solution: don't bother! Refurbish it on its existing footprint a bit at a time, without demolishing any neighbouring buildings and without reducing the train capacity for 10 years just when more is needed.

    HS2 & beyond

    People need to realise that the whole concept of High Speed Trains is a Global business initiative and not a British project. Gordon Brown stated before leaving his PMs office "In order to fight global terrorism what we need is a world government. The global high speed trains will circumvent the world and HS1, HS2 & HS3 are just the beginning . They will open up the UK to global asset management and investment. Search >MIPIM<. Also search >The Atlantic Gateway< & > The Northern Hub Project< to understand what the future holds. In the near future we will be able to travel on high speed trains from London to Beijing in 48 hours. Also from London to Tangiers, Morocco. And ultimately from London west to east to New York City overland by way of the Bering Straight. What I am trying to infer is that the decisions have been taken & it is a done deal, the EU is behind it and from London the HS2 will go to Koln, Frankfurt,Geneva & Istanbul....where they have already launched the building of a tunnel across the Bosporus (by the Japanese PM). While London is being socially engineered, the question is why there is not an International Agreement on Multinationals (IAM) protecting the health & safety, including compensation on all those affected by this so called 'progress' !?

    The better value of money

    The better value of money through a new railway.. sounds good but unreal.. rather it can be achieved in years.

    Adonis and HS2

    "Everyone wants the benefits and no one wants the costs" of large infrastructure projects like HS2, opines Andrew Adonis. Except in the case of HS2 there are no benefits to anyone in Camden, unless you're a shareholder in one of the companies that will profit from the construction/operation of the superfluous railway or the developer who gets a contract to build luxury flats as part of the Euston area makeover.

    It is impossible to terminate

    It is impossible to terminate at Old Oak Common. It has to be central London. So where else could it be?

    Where else could it be? At

    Where else could it be? At Smithfield of course, much closer to central London than Euston and directly across the road from the new Farringdon station ticket hall. Why Farringdon? It's the crossroads between Thameslink and Crossrail so when those two projects are completed they can take HS passengers onwards without clogging up the underground lines. Smithfield is largely disused and due for redevelopment. New platforms under it and under the streets either side will justify the restoration of Smithfield to the standard of the St Pancras restoration.
    Meanwhile, HS2 Ltd struggle to find a viable plan for rebuilding Euston. Solution: don't even try to rebuild it, just refurbish it without without the loss of any buildings and without cutting station capacity for building work for 10 years just when more capacity is needed.

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