HS2: station 'should be in Derby'

HS2 image of proposed train The government said the line will create 10,000 jobs in the region

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Derby City Council said it was prepared to pay "tens of millions of pounds" to bring the HS2 station into Derby.

The government announced on Monday the next phase of the high-speed rail line will stop at Toton, in Nottinghamshire.

Leader of the council Paul Bayliss said the scheme would generate far more for the East Midlands' economy if it stopped in Derby.

MP for Derby North Chris Williamson broadly welcomed the project but said the station was in "no-man's land".

'Greater economic value'

Mr Bayliss said HS2 was good for the region's economy but it would generate about £440m if the station was in Nottingham or Derby - £110m more than it will in Toton.

"We welcome HS2 but essentially we think the station should be in Derby. The reason for that is there's greater economic value for the region and the city and all the cities in the region if it comes into the centre of Derby," he said.

"We are quite prepared to put the city's money behind this [station in Derby] if we are asked to do so.

"We realise that could mean we are committing tens of millions of pounds to support this project but over all it's worth it. It's in the city's economic benefit to do so."

He said the council was prepared to help pay for the necessary works to make to bring HS2 into the city, admitting that could run to tens of millions of pounds.

'No man's land'

Mr Williamson agreed that the station would have been better in Derby.

He said: "I am very pleased that the government has made this announcement. The disappointment however is that the station won't be at Derby.

"I think there's a very strong case to site the station there. It's in a sort of no-man's land putting it in Toton."

The government said it expected 19,700 jobs to be created as a direct result of the stations in Leeds, Sheffield and Toton.

About 100,000 jobs are expected to be created nationally and 10,000 construction workers will be employed to complete the project.

The government claimed passengers will be able to travel from Toton to London in 51 minutes and Birmingham in 19 minutes.

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