High Speed Rail 2 (HS2) phase 1 & 2

View over the lake towards the west front of the house at Claydon, Buckinghamshire.
The parkland around Claydon National Trust Images / Arnhel de Serra

The Government is developing a new national high speed rail network (HS2) connecting London to Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester, the most significant transport infrastructure project in the UK since the building of the motorways.

Our project team, including rail engineering, landscape architecture and landscape planning experts, works with our regional consultancy and property teams to undertake thorough assessments of the potential impacts of the railway and it’s infrastructure on our places; promote alternative treatments that benefit our places, the environment and communities affected; and, negotiate changes with HS2 Ltd.

Phase One (London to Birmingham)

Whilst we have not opposed HS2 in principle, we remain opposed to the route of phase one, from London to Birmingham, for two key reasons:

  1. Its impact on the nationally designated Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
  2. The impact on Hartwell House near Aylesbury, where our Grade I listed house and Grade II* listed park and garden will be directly affected.

The proposed route will also pass through the Waddesdon Estate, with its Victorian garden thought to be one of best in Britain; close to Claydon, once home to Florence Nightingale; and Coombe Hill, formerly part of the Chequers Estate. Construction traffic is also due to pass through the historic villages of West Wycombe and Bradenham.

Rather than campaign against HS2, we have put our efforts into seeking the best possible mitigation for the route as it passes around Aylesbury by engagement with HS2 Ltd and at Parliament as required.

Phase Two (Birmingham to Leeds and Manchester)

On 17 July 2013 the Government launched a consultation for proposed route for Phase 2 of the high speed line, linking Birmingham with both Manchester and Leeds - maps of the phase 2 route are available to download.

We are deeply concerned about the impacts of the route chosen for the line up to Leeds where it passes through the Hardwick Estate near Chesterfield, Derbyshire.

We are also concerned about potential indirect impacts on Calke Abbey near Derby, Staunton Harold Church in Leicestershire, and Nostell Priory near Wakefield on the eastern side of the Y route. The western link could have impacts on Shugborough near Stafford, Dunham Massey near Altrincham and Tatton Park near Knutsford.

We are working to develop our understanding of the vulnerabilities of these special places and the potential impacts of the scheme based on what we have learned from Phase One.