A CAMPAIGN group opposed to plans for the HS2 high-speed rail line has claimed that Stroud, Gloucester, and the Forest of Dean could lose more than £34 million a year if the scheme gets the go-ahead.
The HS2 Action Alliance says last week’s HS2 re-launch in Manchester offered ‘no benefits’ to Gloucestershire – and that economic output in Stroud and Gloucester could suffer as businesses choose to invest nearer to the new line between London, Birmingham and Crewe.
A report by KPMG management consultants on the economic impact of the line shows the area will be one of 50 parts of the UK to lose out, says the group.
Stroud, Gloucester and the Forest would see economic output fall by £34.38m a year, it says.
The Government claims HS2 would boost the UK economy by £15 billion a year.
But campaigners say the extent to which regions not on the proposed line would be affected has only now been revealed following a Freedom of Information request.
“Britain will have a two-tier economy if HS2 is built with areas close to the line gaining and many other areas losing out,” said Peter Chegwyn, of the HS2 Alliance. “HS2 is very bad news for the Gloucester and Stroud area.”