The complex Hybrid Bill authorising Phase 1 of HS2 is set to return to the House of Commons this week for the final approval of MPs before receiving Royal Assent, but two opposing groups have launched a last-ditch bid to block the project before it has been legally authorised. The two groups are the Taxpayers' Alliance, which refuses to accept the official cost of £56 billion for all phases, and Friends of the Earth, who back high speed rail in principle but say the HS2 routes are badly chosen and do not connect with HS1.
Railfreight campaigners are concerned that a reduction in government support for railfreight facilities could bring thousands of additional lorries on to the roads, if hauliers decide that using rail is too expensive. It's being claimed that a loss of £4 million in railfreight grants could mean another 190,000 lorry journeys each year.
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