Campaigners say 'Don't let HS2 ruin our lives'

Crofton HS2 protest.
Crofton HS2 protest.

Campaigners battling against HS2 in Crofton have staged a protest after it was announced plans for a depot in the village had been scrapped.

They said that after plans to build the HS2 depot had been moved to Leeds there was no longer any reason that the route should run through the village and "ruin the lives" of residents.

Crofton HS2 protest.

Crofton HS2 protest.

Jonathan Pile, chairman of Stop HS2 Crofton, said: "We asked HS2 to do a study to move the route out of Crofton. We suggested there could be a shorter route than the one proposed. It doesn't need to go through Crofton at all any more.

"The effect it would have is trains thundering through at 250mph. We would be one of busiest sections so there would be trains every three minutes at peak times and then there are night freight trains to think about.

"People won't be able to sit out and enjoy the weather, they won't be able to open their window or sleep because of the noise.

"Children won't be able to get sleep during exams times, there will be constant dust during the construction and around 1,000 HGVs a day travelling through.

"Pontefract Road and Doncaster Road will be gridlocked. Anyone in Sharlston, Walton or Wakefield will be in trouble if they want to get anywhere during the six years construction will take.

"People's lives will never be the same again - it will affect all aspects. If tunnels were being built it would mitigate it somewhat, but only London and the south east will get them. People's lives will be ruined."

Earlier this month it was confirmed that depot planned for Crofton would now be built at east Leeds.

Department for Transport officials said depot would allow 24-hour maintenance of the high speed trains running from London to Manchester and Yorkshire and create 125 skilled jobs.

A consultation was launched when it emerged that the high-speed line would pass to the east of Crofton, rather than the west, and “appeared likely to have a greater impact on the local community”.

Officials say the new location will reduce the site’s environmental impact by cutting the distance empty trains travel for overnight stabling.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “Constructing this vital depot in Leeds underlines how the benefits of HS2 drive prosperity right across the UK, with Yorkshire playing a crucial role in maintaining the new high speed trains and delivering significantly better journeys for passengers.”