THE controversial HS2 Golborne Link, which was set to have a major impact on parts of Warrington including, Culcheth, Glazebury, Croft and Lymm, is set to be scrapped.
Transport Minister Andrew Stephenson has announced the proposal it a letter which has been welcomed by Warrington South MP Andy Carter and local borough councillors at Culcheth, Glazebury and Croft.
In his letter, the Transport Minister said Sir Peter Hendry’s independent union connectivity review stated the Golborne Link did not resolve all the current constraints between Crewe and Preston and recommended the Government consider alternative options.
As a result, the Government intends to remove the Golborne Link and take time to consider the most effective way to find the right balance between delivering the benefits, improving journey times, controlling costs and understanding the deliverability of alternatives.
“I know it has been difficult for people living along the route of the Spur and the sooner we can lift all safeguarding the better so that families can get on with their lives. Better links through Warrington Town Centre, with a new high-speed route east to west are needed along with improved bus services, that’s my priority in line with the wishes of local people.”
Meanwhile, local councilors at Culcheth, Glazebury & Croft, the areas, most impacted are delighted with the news.
Cllr Carol Benson said: “The negative impacts the Golborne link would have had on our affected Wards were well understood by everyone. Loss of many beautiful open spaces such as the Covey fishing lake at Partridge Lakes, Culcheth (pictured above). Our residents would not have seen any benefit at all of the Golborne link as the trains would not have been accessible locally. After several years of Lobbying from our Warrington South MP, Andy Carter, local activists, and our own action groups, CADRAG with Frank Allen and more recently CLAG, who have all worked hard to raise the profile of this pointless Link, we can at last start to believe our voices have been heard.
“Many meetings have been held, information events and even a Teams meeting facilitated by Andy Carter between Cllr Kath Buckley, Cllr Carol Benson and The House of Commons which was very helpful. We are promised that safeguarding of land and property along the existing route will be maintained, whilst alternative options are considered. We truly welcome this good news and its massive victory for common sense”.
Cllr Valerie Allen added: “I am absolutely delighted at this announcement and for the residents of Culcheth, Glazebury and Croft who along with Cllr Benson, Cllr Maisey and I have argued against this from day one. It would have had done untold damage to wildlife and the greenbelt and effectively cut two villages in half”
Cllr Wendy Maisey added: ” This is the long awaited news we’ve been looking forward to and proof that the Government is listening to the residents of Culcheth, Glazebury and Croft. As the former Parliamentary Candidate for Warrington North I fought the GE19 election on a pledge to oppose the Golborne Link, and have kept that promise. When I met and spoke with the HS2 Minister Andrew Stephenson in May, again he was made very aware of the environmental disaster that is the Golborne Link.”