After many months of speculation that the controversial ‘Golborne Spur’ of the HS2 high speed railway line would be dropped, this week came official Government confirmation that it will definitely not be happening.
The 12.1km section of the line, which was planned to cut through Lowton and Golborne, was intended to ease ‘bottlenecks’ on the network around Crewe. But it would have ripped through our towns, taking a route right through Byrom Hall Wood and affecting many properties.
As a result, many local people have been campaigning against the Golborne Spur for years, including local MP James Grundy, and the late Ted Thwaite, Chair of Lowton East Neighbourhood Development Forum. And in November last year came the first whisperings that this section of the track may never happen, when it emerged that the Government were actively considering ‘alternatives’ to the Golborne Spur. It followed comments earlier that year from transport secretary Grant Shapps that the £3bn cost of this section of the railway didn’t represent “value for money”.
Now the plans are officially off the agenda, and whilst it has lead to some criticism nationally, there is much relief amongst local campaigners who were gravely worried about the impact the line would have had on our local communities.
Reacting to the news, James Grundy, MP for Leigh said: “I am very pleased the Government has decided to scrap the Golborne Spur of HS2.
“This project affected thousands of families in Lowton and Golborne, including my own, and for the last decade caused huge suffering and uncertainty to the families and businesses affected as well as massive damage to the local area.
The spur would have affected the Kings Avenue estate, Pocket Nook Lane, the Oaklands and Meadows estate, residents on Sandy Lane and Newton Road, the Garton Drive/Braithwaite Road estate, the Scott Road estate and residents on Slag Lane. The spur would also have destroyed the Enterprise Way business park in Lowton, costing hundreds of jobs, and would have destroyed Byrom Wood and Lowton Civic Field, much loved green spaces and recreation areas.”
What do you think?
Are you relieved that HS2 plans have been dropped? What would it have meant for you, had it gone ahead? Let us know in the comments below.