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High Speed Rail Command Paper: our response

11 March 2010
Campaign for Better Transport said the Government has failed to show that their high speed rail plans will get people out of cars and planes. The group also warned against cutting transport funding today to fund expensive ‘jam tomorrow’.

Stephen Joseph, Executive Director of Campaign for Better Transport, said:

“The danger is that a high speed line will suck money out of the current transport network. The last thing people want is service cuts, higher fares, and more potholes, while the executive classes are treated to gleaming new high speed trains. 

“Even with extra money on the table, there must be a strategy to get people onto rail. The Government’s plan is high speed rail plus business as usual. It will make no difference to carbon emissions, and could even make things worse. Fares must be cheaper than flying and driving and high speed rail must be an alternative to new motorways and airports.”

Notes to editors:
[1] The Government has today published its proposed strategy for a British high speed rail network in the form of a Government Command Paper.

[2] Campaign for Better Transport is calling on the Government to cut train fares to enable more people to choose the green option to travel by train