Judicial review gives green light for HS2

Published March 19th, 2013

The government has claimed victory after the judicial review gave the green light for the HS2 high-speed rail link to go ahead but there will be a new consultation on property compensation.

Marcus Blake, HS2 specialist with Berrys, updates the situation and outlines the timetable for the project.

It has been a busy start to 2013 for HS2. With consultations taking place, Phase II being announced and the result from the Judicial Review requiring the Government to re-run part of the consultation programme, HS2 now face a busy year ahead.

Phase I Update
Since the start of 2013 further information has become available as to proposed timelines for Phase I but these were put into question after the findings of the Judicial Review announced on 15th March. The High Court rejected most of the applications for judicial reviews on the scheme but it did find against the Government on its approach to consultation on property compensation.

At the time of writing the Secretary of State has decided that instead of appealing The Hon Mr Justice Ouseley’s decision the Government will re-run the property compensation consultation in line with the judge’s finding. This re-running of the property compensation consultation is not expected to delay the HS2 construction timetable in any way.

The latest indication of timings for Phase I are as follows:
• Re-running of property compensation consultation (timing to be confirmed)
• Consultation on the draft environmental statement in spring 2013
• Safeguarding of route expected summer 2013 – resulting in first Blight Claims
• Deposit of Hybrid Bill expected by end of 2013
• Mid 2015 – proposed timing for Royal Accent.
• 2017 acquisition of property and commencement of construction
• 2022 – proposed finish of line excluding infrastructural works (i.e. power cables, gantries etc)
• Line open 2026/27

The property compensation package proposed by HS2 is expected to include:
• Advance Purchase Scheme (APS) for properties within the Safeguarded zone (60m each side of the proposed line)
• Voluntary Purchase Scheme (VPS) for properties in rural areas immediately outside the Safeguarded zone (between 60m and 120m each side of the proposed line)
• Sale and Rent-back Scheme allowing owners to remain in properties that are purchased under the APS and designated for demolition
• Hardship Scheme for those outside both safeguard and voluntary purchase zones (similar to the existing Exceptional Hardship Scheme)

In due course there will be an opportunity for those property owners directly affected to petition for changes to the Hybrid Bill. This will be the chance to negotiate and petition for changes and accommodation works to mitigate the impact of the scheme on their property.

Specialists at Berrys are able to advise on this process and assist with representations made.

Phase II
On January 27, HS2 announced the second phase of the scheme. This results in a ‘Y’ shaped overall route linking London to Birmingham and then dividing to Leeds and Manchester. The proposed timescale for Phase II is likely to be:
• 2-3 years behind Phase I
• Consultation on the route 2013/14
• Route confirmed 2015
• Draft Environmental Statement & draft Hybrid Bill 2016/17
• Line open 2032/33

It is expected that a form of Exceptional Hardship Scheme for owner-occupiers of homes and small businesses will follow shortly to assist those in immediate financial hardship resulting from not being able to sell their property.

Berrys already represent a number of affected owners on both Phases I and II and are in direct discussions with HS2. Please contact Marcus Blake of Berrys Towcester Office for assistance with Phase I on 01327 356140 or email For assistance with Phase II please contact Peter Baron on 01606 818960 or email

For more information...

Visit our relevant website page: HS2