£20bn less than existing plans for HS2 & HS3.


Improves 94% of journeys and reduces journey time by an average of 40%.


Saves 600 million tonnes of CO2 and avoids the Chilterns AONB.


Improves regional rail across the UK and integrates with the existing rail infrastructure.


High Speed UK - Connecting the Nation



“HS2 modelling is shocking, biased and bonkers.”

Margaret Hodge, Chair, Public Accounts Committee

“No economic case for HS2... it will destroy jobs and force businesses to close.”

Institute of Economic Affairs


6. Has the Government considered HSUK?

The Government claims to have considered HSUK, but any such consideration (and of course dismissal!!) has been based upon flawed analysis carried out very early in the HS2 project.  Under the analysis conducted by HS2 Ltd, HSUK (then entitled High Speed North) was dismissed from consideration, with the reasoning offered that it failed to satisfy the HS2 remit, that any new high speed line should pass through the West Midlands en route to conurbations further north.

Detailed review by HSUK reveals the following critical deficiencies in HS2 Ltd’s analysis:

HS2 Ltd only gave serious consideration to network options conforming with the selected HS2 route through the Chilterns AONB and passing through the West Midlands;  any proposal such as HSUK that followed the M1 corridor was not analysed in detail.   

HS2 Ltd has never presented any rationale to explain why routeing through the West Midlands (but passing clear of central Birmingham) comprises the best-connected and most efficient option for a national network of high speed lines.

Comparison of HSUK with the network options considered by HS2 Ltd (i.e. ‘Inverse A’, ‘Reverse S’ and ‘Reverse E’) indicates clearly that HSUK’s ‘spine and spur’ configuration offers the best performance, by a considerable margin, in interlinking the UK’s primary conurbations.

The London-West Midlands stem of HS2, on which all network options considered by HS2 Ltd are based, was designed with no consideration of national network development.  The fundamental illogicality and idiocy of using the Chiltern-aligned HS2 stem as the basis of network development is proved by every aspect of HSUK’s superior performance as a national railway system.

For further details see the HSUK Due Process Challenge and HS2 Ltd Network Design – Epic Fail.

The Government has been alerted to these concerns in HSUK’s many consultation responses (all set out in our document HS2 – High Speed Trains, Slow Speed Brains), and these responses have presumably been analysed by the Government’s experts at HS2 Ltd and the Department for Transport.  It’s frankly incredible that any of these experts can seriously believe that the HS2 ‘Y-network’ constitutes the best option for interlinking the UK’s many regional conurbations, and for meeting the HS2 project’s fundamental objective of “hugely enhanced capacity and connectivity” – but it’s perfectly believable that none of these experts are prepared to admit to their political masters that they’ve made a massive mistake.

Meanwhile, in all correspondence, the Government continues to refuse to consider HSUK’s massively superior performance as a national network, and its achievement of the fundamental requirement for “hugely enhanced capacity and connectivity” between the UK’s major conurbations.  Instead, it insists on regurgitating its flawed and discredited analysis.