HS2 Construction Issues

Latest News: (last updated 11 October 2019)

Parish Council representatives attend the county council's HS2 Liaison Group meetings where HS2 construction issues are reviewed on a regular basis.

HS2 select committee of MPs in Lower Thorpe, 2014.

HS2 have provided a map indicating the ground investigation works undertaken in autumn 2018. See the News item on 21 September 2018 on the Home page for details.

HS2 drop-in sessions are occasionally held to enable affected parishes to discuss issues with HS2 representatives. The venue, dates and times for local sessions will be shown in the events section on the Home page of this website.

Banbury Lane may be closed for through traffic at Lower Thorpe for up to two years during the construction period.

The Parish Council has been advised that information received from HS2 indicates construction of the Lower Thorpe viaduct will take approximately 20 months. Environmental activity has already started. In May 2019 HS2 announced that on the Lower Thorpe and Edgcote viaducts is scheduled to commence in mid-2020. The work on the Banbury Road over bridge is scheduled to start "in 2020" (between Bulls Lane and the Magpie.). However work on the Greatworth tunnel is scheduled to start in 2019. The tunnel will emerge near to where the model airplane club operated.

HS2 propose to provide a works compound betweenBanbury Road and the Sulgrave Road near to where the model airplane club operated. It will provide offices and parking for up to 250 vehicles. An additional problem is that HS2 are now designating this site for a concrete batch plant, preparing concrete for use along the route. It will give an industrial feel to the location.

It will be necessary to close the B4525 near Greatworth and therefore HS2 are proposing a temporary public road named the 'Greatworth T' taking B4525 traffic away from near Greatworth Park to the Sulgrave Road near the east side of 'our' works compound. Traffic can then drop back to the B4525.

Construction traffic concerns

Construction traffic is a major concern. HS2 propose to route construction traffic along Banbury Lane through Thorpe Mandeville village to the Lower Thorpe compound throughout the anticipated two year construction period probably starting in 2020. This has created great safety and environmental concerns. The Parish Council petitioned against the HS2 Hybrid Bill requesting noise and construction traffic mitigation. In January 2015 HS2 offered an Assurance to remove large construction traffic going through the village centre with the exception of the creation of the satellite work compound and a balancing pond in Lower Thorpe; a cross country haul route is proposed.

Weekday construction traffic flow along 'Banbury Road' adjacent to the village, between Bulls Lane and the B4525 is estimated by HS2 to be circa 530 vehicles each way daily at peak time.

HS2 has a locally focused website for our area: http://hs2innorthants.commonplace.is

HS2 has also set up a helpdesk team: Tel. 08081 434434 (a Freephone number.)

The link below is a map produced by HS2 in 2015 showing anticipated peak traffic flows in 2021. This was issued before HS2 agreed to reduce traffic along Banbury Lane in the centre of the village.

Other concerns

Other major concerns being considered by the HS2 Liaison Group meeting, mentioned above, are the design of power gantries and viaducts. The meeting is endeavouring to monitor and influence the position. The design of the viaduct in Lower Thorpe is regarded as a Key Design Element and apparently details will not be released to the public until early 2020.

Above: HS2 opposition sign at The Three Conies Inn, 2010, before the HS2 Bill received Royal Assent.