Chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission Lord Adonis today welcomed a significant step forward in the delivery of High Speed 2 from London to the North of England.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling introduced the hybrid Bill that would enable the rail line to continue from Birmingham on to Crewe, and published the finalised route that will connect Crewe to Manchester, and Birmingham to Leeds – completing a high speed line that will start from the heart of the Capital. HS2 Ltd has also announced the first group of major contracts for the construction of the first phase of the line from London to the West Midlands.

This was one of the 12 key infrastructure decisions in the Government’s in-tray that the National Infrastructure Commission identified as needing urgent action following the general election.

Today’s announcement meets the deadline set by the Commission of end of July 2017 in its post-election statement.

Chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission Lord Adonis said:

“HS2 is one of the largest and most important infrastructure projects we are undertaking in this country.  It is a huge step forward to have contracts in place to begin construction on the ground, and a second Bill in the House to maintain momentum towards delivering a high-speed and high-capacity connection between London and the North of England. The publication of the finalised routes for the lines to Manchester and Leeds is also a major milestone.

“This was one of the 12 key infrastructure decisions we said Government needed to make as a matter of urgency and so I’m pleased to see such strong progress.

“The announcement by the Transport Secretary means the industry can continue confidently with their plans to deliver this vital project, and communities can consider how best to make the most of this significant investment.

“I now look forward to seeing how this route will connect up with a High Speed 3 rail line in the future.”