HS2 advertises 300 Birmingham-based jobs

The high speed rail company HS2 Ltd has announced that 300 new posts are being created in Birmingham.

The jobs will be in a range of disciplines building the high speed rail link between London and Birmingham, including engineering and project management.

They're being advertised from today as part of a three-month recruitment drive.

Report urges 'greater role for Cumbria' for HS2 trains

A new report claims there could be greater economic benefits for Cumbria, if the county is able to play a bigger part in the plans for the new high speed rail service, HS2.

The study, for the "not for profit" organisation, Greengauge 21, says improvements between Manchester and Scotland would strengthen the north of England's economy, and reduce carbon emissions.

HS2 artist's impression
HS2 Ltd

So far plans for services north of the end of the dedicated new HS2 line near Manchester have suggested no stops between Preston and Scotland, but the report suggests Carlisle could be a hub for passengers to connect to trains across the north of England.

The author, Jim Steer, also suggests other improvements such as a brand new line avoiding the stretch between Oxenholme and Lancaster, and a possible bypass round Penrith to speed journey times.

The good news is that the plan now from HS2 Ltd is that Anglo-Scottish trains will stop at Carlisle but there's still no sign of trains that will continue southwards onto HS2 from Penrith and Oxenholme."

Jim Steer

Cleveland Bridge provides HS2 girders

Darlington-based Cleveland Bridge have produced 24 massive steel girders that will form part of the first bridges to be built on the HS2 project.

The firm, which was involved in the construction of the arch at Wembley stadium, has been signed up to provide 1,130 tonnes worth of steel girders for four bridges being built at HS2's new interchange station in Solihull.

Crane lifts girder into place
Cleveland Bridge

Sixteen of the 20m-long girders were assembled in the Cleveland Bridge factory as 50 tonne pairs to minimise the amount of delivery vehicles on the road. Having now been moved to the site, they will be put together with 8,500 high strength bolts to form a 65m span over the M42.

Cleveland Bridge managing director Chris Droogan said: “We’re incredibly proud to play a part in the delivery of the UK’s largest infrastructure project and this is a significant addition to our track-record for producing structures for iconic developments around the world.

“We’ve been very conscious of the need to continue work during the Covid-19 crisis and have put extra measures in place to ensure we met government guidelines and follow best practice. This has enabled us to continue operating at 100%, which has been key to us staying on track to deliver our product on time.”

Anti-HS2 'rolling blockade' at Euston

Sam Francis

BBC News, London

HS2 rebellion

An anti-HS2 protest group have begun a "rolling blockade" at the entrance to a building site at Euston.

A group calling themselves HS2 Rebellion - an offshoot of Extinction Rebellion - had blocked Cardington Street, in Euston, with a banner reading "NHS not HS2" at about 08:00 this morning.

Police cleared the group shortly after 9.00 on Monday but protesters returned two hours later.

The group had plans to relieve protesters at the blockade every hour with new members claiming they were using their permitted time for outdoor exercise.

After police arrived the protesters began jogging on the spot.

In a press statement the group said: "HS2 Ltd is risking the wellbeing of its workers, their families and communities by prioritising a few weeks of work over their safety.

"There are no winners here, but there are losers – and our NHS is one of them. Not only does HS2 work risk spreading infection, the money being funnelled into this over-budget project could be spent on our under-funded healthcare system."

The protesters are wearing masks and standing two metres apart.

HS2 protest
HS2 Rebellion