HS2: Conservative government has betrayed our communities

6 Oct 2023

Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidates for Hazel Grove and Cheadle, Lisa Smart and Tom Morrison have slammed Rishi Sunak’s decision to cancel the Northern leg of HS2. They called it a display of arrogance and contempt for the people of Greater Manchester.

In Rishi Sunak’s speech at Conservative conference, after days of speculation, he announced that the Northern leg of HS2 would be scrapped. It means that the major infrastructure project that was meant to connect Northern communities and close the North-South divide will not go ahead, whilst also ending any possibility for the much-needed Northern Powerhouse Rail.

The Conservative Party’s commitment to their ‘Levelling Up’ agenda has come under fire as Northern communities will once again be subjected to worse transport links than the South. The decision will mean substandard rail connections and track capacity in the North will continue to hamper the everyday lives of rail users and commuters. Regional and local railway lines are also expected to suffer.

Liberal Democrat candidate for the Cheadle constituency, Tom Morrison, said “This decision amounts to nothing less than a complete betrayal. Our communities can never again trust a Conservative MP to ensure that our cities, towns and villages get the transport links that they deserve.

“Conservative MPs in Greater Manchester and the North have utterly failed to stand up for our region. To come up to Manchester for their party conference, and tell the people of the North West that we don’t deserve the rail infrastructure investment they promised us is nothing short of an insult.”

Lisa Smart said: “As if this was not bad enough, to add insult to injury the Prime Minister announced that the Euston London connection would be going ahead. This Conservative government simply does not care about the North, they never have.

“We need local MPs who will stand up for our communities, ensure that we are heard and get the transport links that we deserve. For too long we have been neglected, this is just the latest iteration of Conservative Party contempt. So much for Levelling Up.”

It’s Lib Dem Lisa or the Conservatives – Labour have never done better than third place at general elections here!"

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