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766 jobs at risk from HS2


At least 766 jobs are at risk claim MAPA HS2 Action, if the eastern ‘Measham Loop’, route is chosen by HS2

As North West Leicester District Council and Leicestershire County Council near the dates by which they must respond to the new consultation on the revised routes for HS2, MAPA HS2 Action has stepped up its campaign to persuade the two councils not to approve the new route.

They have sent draft copies of a survey MAPA has been undertaking to demonstrate that this new route will have a greater impact on job losses than the old ‘western’ route to councillors and to both authorities.

Their survey, shows that far from preserving jobs, the new route is likely to affect 766 jobs compared with the previous route affecting 425 jobs. It also shows that the effects are more widespread, with 363 jobs under threat in Measham and 257 in Appleby Magna, as well as other job losses elsewhere along the route.

The survey, undertaken by Steve Leary a MAPA member entailed numerous site visits and interviews with 28 local employers to gain all the figures. In doing so it soon became clear that the scheme that allows new uses for redundant farm buildings had not only led to establishment and growth of local businesses, but also that there is a demand for more premises, as already planning permission has been granted that would allow for another 135 people to be employed. If these premises are demolished however, which will happen if the new route is approved, these potential job opportunities will be lost.

As well as supporting employment, these 28 firms collectively have an annual turnover estimated to be over £69m, with about £22.5m being spent within 30 miles of the business.

Steve Leary said,

“ We’ve been asked by Chris Grayling the Secretary of State for Transport whether he should be minded to approve this new route. Our response, in terms of job losses, is a resounding no and that should also be, in the light of our detailed evidence about the effect on jobs and the local economy, be the position taken by North West Leicestershire District Council and Leicestershire County Council

Having nearly completed this survey I’m already staggered that so much economic harm may blight our area with no benefit coming our way at all. If chosen, this route will lose us far more jobs and job opportunities than the previous route would have done, 766 compared to 425. In addition, the loss of over £29m to the local economy is also significant.

We still have some time to complete our survey and that will entail visiting at least five more firms, so expect the final figures to be increased when we publish our final figures.”

 

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