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Labour leader Ed Miliband puts national interest before Camden concerns over HS2

PUBLISHED: 12:00 16 October 2013

Ed Miliband MP met with independent business owners in Camden last week. Picture: Polly Hancock

Ed Miliband MP met with independent business owners in Camden last week. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

Leader of the opposition Ed Miliband has said that he understands concerns surrounding High Speed Rail 2 (HS2) but that the “national interest” must come first.

Mr Miliband spoke cautiously about Labour’s support for HS2, which will link Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds with London Euston, during his visit.

He repeated shadow chancellor Ed Balls’s remarks that Labour would not give a “blank cheque” for the project if the party was elected in 2015.

“As a local resident, I do understand the concerns in Camden and that’s got to go through the proper planning process,” said Mr Miliband, who lives in Dartmouth Park. “But I would say that you have to make the decision on HS2 about the national interest, and then look and see what can be done to deal with local concerns.

“We’ve got to make sure it is value for money and there can’t be any blank cheques.

“We’ve got to get the national decision right on HS2, that’s the process we’ve got to go through.”

The £43billion project will affect nearly 500 homes and historic bridges, including Camden Lock, as they are demolished to make way for the railway.

The project is estimated to cost in the region of £43billion.


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