HS2 Derbyshire tram plans 'could devastate canal'

Erewasah Canal
Image caption The Erewash Canal was opened in 1779 and is still in use today

Plans to build a tram line along the route of a former canal, to take passengers to an HS2 rail hub, have been attacked by a restoration group.

The disused Derby Canal is being lined up to link the high-speed train project's planned hub near Toton with Derby.

The Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust is leading a £60m project to restore the old canal.

A report on the scheme is due to be published later in the year.

Image caption Erewash Canal runs for 11.5 miles between the River Trent near Nottingham to Langley Mill

The canal trust's chairman Chris Madge said the trust was devastated by the move.

"Nobody's had the courtesy to come and talk to us about it," he said.

He said the trust supported an alternative tram route running alongside the A52 road.

Image caption Chris Madge said the trust is "devastated" by plans to use Derby Canal for the HS2 link

The Derby Canal opened in 1796, but was filled in during the 1960s.

The restoration plan will allow it to be used again.

It joins the Erewash Canal, which is still in use, near Sandiacre.

Image caption The Derby Canal - which meets the Erewash Canal near Sandiacre - was filled in during the 1960s

In July, the Local Democracy Reporting Service reported Erewash Borough Council was against plans to use Derby Canal to link to the HS2 hub.

The authority said opposition was "on the basis that other options may be better and need to be explored before any final decision is made".

Image caption A link along Derby Canal is one of the proposals

East Midlands Councils said its report on HS2 was due this autumn, while the whole project is to be reviewed by the government.

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