Opposition for High Speed rail is growing and homeowners must not give up hope, is the message from campaigners.
Residents across Kenilworth and Burton Green are urged ‘not to give up’ in the fight against the Government’s plans as more public bodies slam proposals and councillors prepare to look into pressing ahead with appeals.
The director general of the UK’s Institute of Directors has urged the Government to abandon the rail plan, describing it as “a grand folly” and “not worth the money”.
Warwickshire County Council will discuss its next move in September when a decision must be made if the council will press ahead with costly legal challenges or step back from the fight.
Joe Rukin, Kenilworth Stop HS2 campaigner, said it was a sign that yet another organisation was slamming the plans, weakening the government’s argument each day.
“This is a sign that there is hope,” he said. “The IoD are another independent organisation in a very long line of groups which dismiss the Government’s claims.
“Whichever argument you look at, there is simply no case for HS2 and we must keep fighting for our homes.
“This Whitehall Elephant has to be stopped before it tramples across our future.”
A county council spokesman said a report will go before the full council in September when any future spending will be endorsed or rejected by members.
The county council, Warwick District Council and Kenilworth Town Council are all opposed to the rail line which will cut close to the town and through Burton Green.
The district council has already spent around £120,000 fighting the case in the courts and the figure may well rise.
Campaign group Stop HS2 and 51m -a coalition of local authorities along the route- were granted the right to appeal the environmental case in the Supreme Court.
A date has been set for October 15 but it is not yet decided if Warwickshire’s councils will continue to be financially involved.
In the meantime, anyone whose home lies within the safeguarding zone can serve a blight notice on the Government to buy up their home at unblighted market value.
Up to 30 houses in Burton Green may be eligible as the village was described as one of the most affected along the London to Birmingham route.
The fight against the rail tracks will continue in the village on September 13 when Jerry Marshall, chair of the local protest group, launches his personal account of the Stop HS2 campaign.
The book, ‘Travels with an Inflatable Elephant’, will be launched at a ceremony in the village hall from 7.30pm. All proceeds to the campaign.
HS2 Ltd has defended the plans for the line as beneficial and important for the country’s rail links and economy.
Chief executive Alison Munro said: “Whilst we respect the right of the Institute of Directors to state its case, we believe that HS2 will provide value for money and will bring about a transformational change to the economic geography of our country.”