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HS2's specialist ecology teams will plant over 300,000 trees across the Phase One route during the winter months. This will take the total number of trees planted between London and the Midlands to over 730,000 by Spring 2021.
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One of the worlds oldest surviving pieces of monumental railway architecture to be preserved and enhanced in new HS2 Curzon Street Station.
Leader of Birmingham City Council: 'This is an important milestone in the transformation of this amazing old building and the new Curzon Street Station will be one of the real show pieces of the entire HS2 network.'

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With protesters camped nearby, two giant £170m machines are being assembled. In a decades time, passengers on the new high-speed trains hurtling out of London will get just a burst of daylight and a glimpse of the Colne Valley landscape before disappearing back underground through the Chiltern Hills. Today, in that three-mile stretch between future tunnel openings to the north-west of the capital, the £98bn HS2 projects scale, engineering might and cost are all evident: both at the vast work site scooped out beside the M25 in Buckinghamshire, and in nearby waters and woods where protesters are still encamped to stop machines coming through.
(Permalink) Chilterm Hills.TBM HS2 Tunnel Boring Machine

240 sites now active along the route between London and the West Midlands, employing over 13,000 people with tens of thousands more jobs supported through the supply chain.
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Over 180 freight trains set to deliver material to HS2's main compound in Buckinghamshire in next 12 months, equivalent to 12,670 HGVs that would otherwise be on Britains roads

Use of rail freight to this site will cut 30,150 tonnes of carbon - the equivalent of flying from London to Edinburgh 930 times!
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Direct service between Carlisle and London will support the Lake District's 2040 Vision for Visitor Travel
HS2 provides a carbon-friendly, fast-travel solution linking Cumbria and the capital

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New timelapse shows progress of work outside Euston station. Preparations for Londons high speed rail terminus at Euston has reached a new milestone as the two office towers outside the existing station are now at ground level. Grant Thornton House and One Euston Square designed by prolific and divisive modernist architect Richard Seifert have made way for the new high speed station, with more space for passengers and better links to the London Underground.

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Plans for three hour Scotland-London rail trips must be fast tracked so HS2 does not provide 'disproportionate benefits' to the south of England, a Scottish Government official has warned.
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HS2 Ltd has been urged to fund the rehousing of 175 council households in London enduring 'unbearable' conditions due to construction works on their doorstep.
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HS2 and the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) have agreed to work together to deliver the utility diversions required to enable the planned Birmingham Eastside extension to serve the new HS2 Curzon Street Station on its proposed route to Digbeth.
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Following the Prime Minister announcing the start of construction on the London-Birmingham route, HS2 has released £12 billion worth of supply chain contracts to be let over the next 18 months
British businesses actively encouraged to bid for contracts
4-day virtual event starting today will showcase the plethora of opportunities available and advise businesses on how to get contract ready

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Trade association Logistics UK has stepped up pressure on the government to ensure that the freight sector benefits from capacity released on the conventional network by the opening of the first phases of High Speed 2.
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Registrations now open for over 1,000 one-to-one meetings with HS2 contractors.
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I sometimes feel like branding plays a larger role in politics than we often give it credit for. Most people - normal people, I mean, not the sort of people who write things like this or, quite frankly, read them - have neither time nor inclination to pay any attention to nerdy, wonkish matters of what policy actually does. ... I cant quite shake the idea that one of the big mistakes made by the people who came up with the UKs proposed new rail link was the name. High Speed 2, after all, implies that the fundamental purpose of the line is faster trains and shorter journey times, and - underrated city though Birmingham undoubtedly is - knocking 33 minutes off train times from there to London does indeed seem like a flimsy reason to spend £80bn on a new train set. The real argument for HS2 isnt about speed at all, but about the number of people we can fit onto Britains rail network. The new line, construction of which started in September, will increase the capacity of the network in two different ways.
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Soil is being moved to new sites but ecologists question whether the process is effective.
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The veteran pear tree in Warwickshire, named by locals as 'The Cubbington Pear Tree' will live on in the form of regrown saplings as part of HS2's environment programme to support delicately balanced local ecosystems, and create bigger and more joined up habitats along the HS2 route.
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Residents have spoken of their 'utter devastation' after a 250-year-old pear tree in Warwickshire, a famous local landmark and England's tree of the year in 2015, was felled to make way for the HS2 rail line. The tree, thought to be the second-oldest wild pear tree in the country, had become a focal point in the protest against HS2, a high-speed rail line that will connect London and Birmingham, and which protesters say will cause huge environmental damage.
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A high-speed train 'stabling' facility - creating up to 100 jobs is set to be constructed, but hopes it'll be in South Lanarkshire could hit the buffers.
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Work on Euston station and asbestos removal add to bill for London to Birmingham phase. HS2's costs have risen by another £800m, the government has admitted, barely a month after the official start of construction of the high-speed rail network. The reshaping of Euston station is likely to cost at least £400m more than planned, while the discovery of more asbestos than expected in demolitions along the line of the route has added around another £400m.
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A Grade-II listed statue of railway pioneer Robert Stephenson has been removed and put into safe storage while Euston station undergoes its major HS2 redevelopment.
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HS2 Ltd has signed the contract for the first two giant tunnelling machines for London's HS2 tunnels, marking significant progress on the southern stretch of HS2.
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The Government has for the first time signalled that it is considering making Carlisle a major stopping point for the transformative High Speed 2 rail project. The consultation proposes that Carlisle becomes the point at which 200m trains from Glasgow and Edinburgh stop, and the 400m services suitable for the high speed line begin. To accommodate this, it is proposed that Carlisles platforms three and four are extended, and platform two is filled in.
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The site in the south of Scotland could house up to 28 trains for cleaning and light maintenance. [The location would be a greenfield site just west of Quintinshill, location of Britain's deadliest rail disaster. See p43 of PDF.]
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HS2 will cut emissions, improving air quality and supporting a net-zero carbon economy. Emissions are being designed out of HS2 stations and depots. Green initiatives during construction include transporting material by rail, adopting zero pollution machinery, and using renewable energy such as solar power.
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Plans to extend Britain's new railway, High Speed Two, moved a step closer today with the opening of a new public consultation which invites people's views on the latest proposals for the railway.
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Historians explore the history of Birmingham's 'slogger gangs' in new BBC Documentary - 'HS2 - The Biggest Dig'. Discovery of unusual objects in dissected skulls revealed.

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In January last year, archaeologists working on the HS2 project located the remains of Captain Matthew Flinders, the Royal Navy explorer who led the first circumnavigation of Australia and is credited with giving the country its name. The discovery sparked international media coverage and the find was captured on camera and will be showcased on the BBC Two Documentary, HS2 The Biggest Dig, tonight (Tuesday 22nd September).
(Permalink) HS2 Matthew Flinders

Structural work on the temporary pre-cast factory that will produce tunnel wall segments for HS2's 10-mile-long Chiltern tunnels, has been completed at the south portal site, next to the M25. All of the steel for the frame of the factory has been made in the UK and delivered by specialist steel fabricators, Caunton Engineering, from its base near Moregreen, Nottinghamshire.
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GB Railfreight (GBRf) and Rail Stone Solutions (RSS) are delighted to unveil two contracts to support construction on the first phase of HS2. The deals, with HS2 contractors EKFB (Eiffage, Kier, Ferrovial BAM Nuttall) and BBV (Balfour Beatty VINCI) will see GBRf join forces with RSS to deliver aggregates by rail to the high speed ...
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HS2 The Biggest Dig, a three part documentary series, to air on BBC Two from Tuesday 15 September. Series presented by anthropologist and anatomist, Dr Alice Roberts, and historian, Dr Yasmin Khan.

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An influential group is calling for Scotland to be included in the route for the UKs High Speed 2 line if the government wishes to meet its recent pledges to level up the region. Greengauge 21 CEO Jim Steer explains why this is important and what needs to be done to achieve it.
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Major milestone for Europe's largest infrastructure project as it moves from enabling works to full construction following Governments approval for Notice to Proceed in April. HS2 Ltd and its Tier One contractors expect to recruit for around 22,000 roles in the coming years to build the Phase One route offering people a path back into work after the pandemic. HS2 Ltd CEO Mark Thurston: 'the reality of high speed journeys joining up Britains biggest cities in the North and Midlands and using that connectivity to help level up the country has just moved a step closer'.
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Boris Johnson claims London to Birmingham rail link will bring 22,000 building jobs and 'fire up economic growth'. HS2 has announced the formal start of construction of the high-speed rail line between London and the West Midlands, which it claims will create 22,000 jobs. The prime minister, Boris Johnson, was expected to attend a ceremonial launch of the first shovels in the ground on Friday for the main civil engineering contracts.
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GB Railfreight operates first HS2 construction train to Washwood Heath.
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High Speed 2 project promoter HS2 Ltd has signed what it terms a ground-breaking agreement with the UK Rail Research & Innovation Network of universities and research institutions.
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The Cubbington pear tree is the second-largest in the country, a local landmark and was Englands tree of the year in 2015. Yet, despite years of protests, it is being felled for a railway line.
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A 10 mile tunnel under the Chilterns will be dug but campaigners say it is 'decimating countryside'.
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In its submission to the government consultation on how to decarbonise rail by 2040, HSRG has called for a national high speed rail network, with HS2 acting as the spine from which other schemes connect into.
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HS2 is preparing for the arrival of its first giant tunnelling machines by completing the 17-metre-high headwall and ground reinforcement at what will become the south portal of the 10-mile long Chiltern tunnel. Led by HS2s main works contractor Align JV - a joint venture formed of three companies: Bouygues Travaux Publics, Sir Robert McAlpine ...
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With the Prime Minister having announced the decision to go ahead with HS2, the first rail systems procurement competitions have commenced - for track and signalling. Four new contract opportunities cover the design and build of the complex track systems between London, Birmingham and Crewe, where HS2 trains will join the existing West Coast Mainline.
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HS2 protesters have been accused of practising early morning yoga, swimming naked in a lake and 'howling at the moon' as a council seeks a high court injunction to stop direct action against the project. HS2 Rebellion activists say the legal action by Hillingdon council in west London is the latest in a raft of injunctions aiming to quash the campaign against the £78bn high-speed railway. HS2 is seeking the extension of a separate injunction to enable the eviction of campaigners from the path of bulldozers in west London.
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A new report has been welcomed by campaigners as further endorsement of the case for extending the Borders Railway south into England.
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The controversial HS2 rail link should run to Scotland to boost connectivity, cut carbon and rebalance the economy post Covid-19, according to a new report published today.
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HS2 has received planning approval for Old Oak Common station in west London. It will be the largest new railway station ever built in the UK, with 14 platforms (six high-speed and eight conventional platforms) built in a huge underground box 850 metres long.
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UK: Birmingham City Council granted planning permission for the Curzon Street High Speed 2 station on April 23. Invitations to tender for the construction contract are to be issued this summer.
The councils report said the design developed by project promoter HS2 Ltd with WSP and Grimshaw Architects was truly world class, and the elegant and (deceptively) simple form of the main station building clearly reads as a railway station and harks back to traditional station architecture, delivering this in a confident and contemporary way.
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