19.09.11

Save The Valley - Tom Bankes

Savay owner Tom Bankes has been in touch to bring us up to date with the Save Savay campaign. There has been a cruel twist in the story making it necessary for signatures to be collected again. Please take a few minutes to read through Tom’s open letter, or alternatively head to the bottom and copy the link into your browser to register your opposition to the Hs2 rail link that threatens to destroy the Colne Valley…

“The £32billion high-speed rail link between London and Birmingham has fallen into more controversy after a petition of 104,000 votes has been declared invalid by Government as half of that number collected were by the traditional method of accumulating paper votes at events around the country. This has now been deemed outside the rules of modern petitioning.

For all of us who had signed and are involved with the 51 groups set up along the length of the lines construction this comes as a weak and dishonest move from those in power, especially when recalling a speech from David Cameron in 2010 when he committed a future Conservative-led Government to ensuring that “Any petition that collects 100,000 signatures will be formally debated in the House of Commons”. The Prime Minister did not say that 'any' petition meant electronic petition or that his Government would effectively disenfranchise anyone who signed a paper version.

What is equally disappointing is that the Government has taken a full year to get their official e-petition website organised, which unsurprisingly came online a week after the consultation for Hs2 ended on July 31st 2011. These moves can surely only point to this Government’s recognition that the opposition to Hs2 has considerable backing from all quarters as illustrated by the extensive news archive on the Stophs2 website.

Despite the setback of the disqualification of the one public method of a cumulative show in opposition, please may I take this opportunity to remind you that there are now only three months until a decision date is made and that if this proposal is given the go-ahead without continuing opposition, it's path will irreversibly fragment some of the very best environments and fisheries in this country throughout the Colne Valley and Chilterns at a cost of £160million a mile. That will cost you the tax payer a £1000 per family in the UK for a transport link that’s use will almost exclusively be for the select few.

The unproven business case for the largest engineering project this country has ever seen was illustrated by an appalling lack of detailed structural knowledge shown by all of Hs2s representatives at the many consultation roadshows that they hosted earlier in the year.

Therefore, due to the Government and Hs2s ltd show of scant representation it is vital to continue your opposition to the proposal of Hs2 taking place so please take one minute of your time to visit the official government website…

http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/353

…and register your vote against High Speed Rail. Once you have registered you will receive an e-mail of confirmation highlighting a link that you have to click on to ensure that your signature will be added.

Many thanks,

Tom Bankes. Owner Savay Lake.

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