HS2 legal row continues

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A legal battle over the HS2 railway scheme is continuing, after Mr Justice Singh granted permission for a Judicial Review of the government decision not to publish a report which showed the project was in danger of failing.

Since a request in May 2012, Ministers have been withholding a critical report from the Major Projects Authority, which rated the HS2 Rail project as “amber-red”. This is despite the Information Commissioner ordering the report’s publication.

Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin pulled out of a tribunal investigating the case in December, less than 24 hours before a public hearing was due to happen. The Government had been advised by their own lawyers that they were likely to lose, with McLoughlin and Francis Maude writing to David Cameron saying publication of the report would cause HS2 ‘presentational difficulties’. As a result, the Government blocked further publication using a rare veto.

 

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