23rd May, 2017

Warwick District Council to have say over HS2 detailed design

Leamington Editorial 16th Aug, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

WARWICK District Council will have a say over the detailed design plans for HS2.

The council is to become a “qualifying authority” in relation to the HS2 Hybrid Bill which will grant planning permission for the construction of the high speed railway between London and Birmingham.

But that permission will be subject of a number of conditions requiring those charged with constructing the line to obtain the consent or approval of local planning authorities along the route for some matters including the detailed design and materials of buildings and structures such as bridges and tunnel entrances.

The bill offers each local planning authority the choice between having a wide or narrow range of controls over the approval of such details – with local planning authorities opting for a wider range of controls referred to as “qualifying authorities”.

Qualifying authorities will be responsible for issuing consents and approvals in relation to the detailed design and appearance of structures and other elements of the scheme.

But that responsibility does not extend to the actual principle of their construction which is permitted by the bill itself.

District council development spokesman Coun Stephen Cross said: “Whilst within the scope of the HS2 legislation the role of qualifying authorities is limited in the extent to which they can influence the design of parts of the railway, it does nevertheless offer the only opportunity that is available for the council to retain an element of control over the design of the railway within Warwick District which is why I am pleased we have become a qualifying authority.”