Why Getting to Birmingham on HS2 Will Take Longer

If and when the High Spreed Rail connection between London and Birmingham is built the saving in journey travelling time will be, it is said, twenty minutes. I have no reason to doubt that figure, but it means that travelers will spend twenty minutes less on a moving train than they do now; it does not mean that he journey time will be twenty minutes shorter. In fact it will be longer.

I do not think that HS2 will operate like the present service. At the moment you can get the the platform five minutes before departure and board the train. When HS2 operates I am sure that there will be a check in time for the purposes of security, of at least twenty minutes. The existing high speed service on Eurostar has a check in time for most travelers of 30 minutes, and I do not see that HS2 will require less security checks than Eurostar.

so if the check in time is 30 minutes before departure the overall time the journey will take, compared with the existing service, will be five minutes more than the present service. If the check in time is twenty minutes before departure the overall saving, for an investment by taxpayers of at least £50 million and all the associated environmental upheaval will be five whole minutes.

When we journey we have to consider the overall time involved, not just the time on the train or on the plane. Security checks take up a great deal of time. HS2 offers a marvelous high profile target for terrorists, so no doubt the security checks and I am sure that the security checks, delaying passengers, will be commensurate with the profile of HS2.

Spending lots of money to get to a place slower seems an odd thing to do.



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