Ashley and the HS2

Ashley Parish Council has resolved to oppose the HS2

For a foretaste of things to come, click on each of the photographs on the left a couple of times.
These photographs show the progress of the HS2 from Lamb Lane to the Mobberley Road Bridge

HS2 Affects All Ashley Residents

The path of the HS2 through Ashley will consume a huge amount of land and many homes will be either demolished or blighted.

What is not immediately apparent is the effect the HS2 will have on every resident in Ashley, especially during its construction.

Some of the disruptions that Ashley village will endure are:

  • Road closures, realignments and diversions
  • Main line rail closures
  • Constant movement of heavy construction traffic throughout the village
  • The creation of construction compounds wherever they are most convenient for contractors
  • Noise and air pollution during construction
  • Constant noise once the HS2 is operable

HS2 Phase 2B Consultations - HS2 is Set to Ruin Ashley

Ashley Parish Council urges everyone to respond to these consultations because the outlook for the future of the village is bleak if the proposals go ahead unchanged. The consultations will close at 23:45 on 21st December 2018

The Consultations

On October 11th the Secretary of State for Transport announced the launch of two HS2 consultations for the section of the route from Crewe to Manchester (and West Midlands to Leeds). The consultations concern:

  • The working draft Environmental Statement that describes the potential environmental effects of building and operating Phase 2b of HS2; as well as proposed ways to avoid, reduce, mitigate and monitor the effects.
    The document relating to this consultation is HERE

Public Information Events & Additional Information

30 November 2018
14.00 - 20.00

04 December 2018
14.00 - 20.00

Copies of reference documents
plus maps etc

High Legh Village Hall
West Lane
WA16 6LR
Manchester Airport Marriott
Hale Road
Hale Barns
WA15 8XW
Hale Library
6 Leigh Rd
WA15 9BE

The Proposals

The current proposals for HS2 will result in the railway line being built on an embankment which, in part and including the gantries, will be approximately 50 feet / 16 metres in height. It will intersect Ashley and will be an eyesore which will be seen for many miles around.

In addition, the proposals will split Ashley into two with Ashley Road being blocked off near Stock Farm. It is intended to replace Lamb Lane (next to Stock Farm) with a new road to accommodate all traffic from the other side of the blocked road. The new road will join Mobberley Road in a T junction and will require realignment of Mobberley Road which will consume a significant amount of extra land.

The reason given for blocking off Ashley Road? The prohibitive cost which would be incurred for realignment in comparison with blocking off the road (and building a new road, realigning Mobberley Road, and acquiring/landscaping additional land??)

There are other less than pleasant aspects of the latest proposals in Ashley but the above are probably the ones which have the greatest impact

The Alternatives

Ideally, HS2 should not come through Ashley at all but, as this is but a dream, the alternatives to having the railway on an embankment would be a tunnel through the village or the railway being constructed in a cutting. Although a tunnel would be the best solution there are many reasons, including cost and engineering limitations, why we are told this would not be possible.

Therefore, Ashley Parish Council is strongly in favour of putting the railway in a cutting. The Council has been in talks with HS2 and has stressed its objection to any solution other than a cutting. Unfortunately HS2 has not been totally consistent in their reasons for favouring an embankment. One reason given was that Network Rail refused to allow HS2 to tunnel under the existing railway to accommodate the cutting; another was the prohibitive cost - approximately an additional £50 million, although this figure could not be verified (i.e. it is a guesstimate!!)

The Council and representatives of HS2 conducted a walking tour of the route through Ashley and highlighted a number of issues which HS2 would have to consider in its design. Some of the concerns included limitations of the geological structure of the land.

The Council will be arranging a village meeting in the very near future.


Through Ashley Village

HS2 Phase 2 Maps and Explanations

An Old Map   This map is extracted from page 55 of a document published in 1996 which shows proposed high speed train routes in the UK and which tends to suggest that HS2 was born of this decision . The full European Parliament document, Decision No 1692/96/EC, is included below, but be warned - it is a lengthy document

Decision No 1692/96/EC

Documents and Links of Interest

How the HS2 might look   Some random examples of viaducts and embankments - not necessarily for Ashley

Property Blight and the HS2   Although this document was published in 2010, it is still very relevant

Woodland Trust   The Woodland Trust's concerns over the massive loss of ancient woodlands

Links to Official Documents

The Government's HS2 Site