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1995-07-20 DoT-002
Department of Transport

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Watts welcomes Select Committee's completion of route consideration for CTRL


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Department of Transport

Watts welcomes Select Committee's completion of route consideration for CTRL
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date
20 July 1995
source Department of Transport
type Press release

note 230


The House of Commons Select Committee on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link
Bill today completed its consideration of the route between Cheriton
and St Pancras and announced its initial recommendations.

John Watts, Minister for Railways and Roads, expressed his gratitude
to members of the Select Committee for working so hard to hear all
the petitions about the route by the Summer Recess. He promised to
give the Committee's recommendations serious consideration and
undertook to respond to the Committee before October.

Mr Watts said:

"The Committee faced a task on a scale unprecedented since the
railway bills of the last century - they heard petitions for 260
hours over 53 days which breaks all previous records for a select
committee on a works Bill. The Chairman, Sir Anthony Durant, his
deputy Sir Irvine Patnick and all members of the Committee have
maintained excellent progress, treating petitioners with courtesy and
not overlooking any relevant concern of importance."

The Committee will return in October to hear remaining petitions,
mainly land owners, and will then announce further decisions.
Commenting on the Committee's work, Mr Watts said:

"At the second reading debate in January, I urged the House to rely
on the wise discretion of the Select Committee and not to try to
constrain the Committee. The work done by the Committee shows that
this confidence was well founded.

"Some of these decisions may not be welcome to the Government but we
recognise that they are serious conclusions arising from a patient
and thorough study of the issues and the evidence on them. They
deserve serious consideration and they will get it. I intend to
respond to the Chairman on the key recommendations well before his
Committee returns in October."

NOTES TO EDITORS

1.The Channel Tunnel Rail Link will be a 67 mile high-speed railway
between London and the Channel Tunnel for both international and
domestic passenger services. The cost was estimated in 1993 at #2.7
billion. The Government will provide a substantial financial
contribution in recognition of the domestic transport and
regeneration benefits and also the very large benefits to
international passengers. The final figure will be determined by the
outcome of the competition.

2.The Channel Tunnel Rail Link Bill was introduced into the Commons
last November and received an unopposed Second Reading on 16 January.
The Select Committee started on 21 February considering the 993
petitions received. The Committee has worked along the route from
the Channel Tunnel terminal at Cheriton and this week reached St
Pancras. The Committee will return in October to deal with remaining
petitions which are mainly from land owners and so do not generally
affect the route.

3.The Committee today announced its decisions and recommendations on
the route. There are 47 decisions, including 4 additional provisions
sought. The permission of the Commons would be necessary for the
Government, as Promoter of the CTRL Bill, to bring forward any
additional provision. Additional provisions necessitate fresh plans,
environmental assessment and petitions which the Committee would then
consider. The process would take some months.

4. The Committee comprises nine members: five Conservative and four
Labour. The Chairman is Sir Anthony Durant MP and the Deputy
Chairman is Sir Irvine Patnick MP.


# = pounds sterling


Railhub Archive ::: 1995-07-20 DoT-002





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