Leeds will get its own tram network to make up for the loss of the HS2 connection to the city

  • Leeds could lose High Speed 2 Link due to insufficient funds 
  • Leeds will now have a tram service, rather than a direct link to London.
  • To secure the remainder of the line, ministers will drop the Leeds leg 

Under plans currently being reviewed by Ministers, Leeds will have its own tram network to compensate for the HS2 Link being abandoned.

High Speed 2 was originally designed as a rail line of 250mph linking London, Birmingham and Manchester.

However, Ministers expect to abandon the eastern leg. The high-speed track between Birmingham and Leeds is no longer fully laid.

Ministers will soon publish the integrated rail plan which is expected to confirm scrapping the eastern leg as part of significantly downsizing the UK’s biggest infrastructure project.

The plans have drawn criticism that the Prime Minister risks abandoning a key part of his ‘levelling up’ agenda.

Leeds is being offered a tram service instead of a high speed link to London according to sources close to the government

Sources close to the government claim that Leeds has been offered a tram service rather than a high speed connection to London. 

The Mail on Sunday reports that plans are being discussed for alternatives to HS2, and they have been approved.

A source said last night: ‘We are considering improvements to bring Leeds into line with other cities.’

On Thursday, Boris Johnson is due to hold an ‘away day’ for the Cabinet at Chequers to discuss his ‘levelling up’ agenda.

Ministers will gather for a ‘lunch till dinner’ event at the Prime Minister’s country residence in Buckinghamshire. The Ministers will be able to hear from Andy Haldane (the former chief economist of the Bank of England) and Michael Gove (Levelling Up Secretary). Others Ministers will present shorter presentations.

According to The Times they will need to bring A3 maps that show their plans for leveling up the country by 2024 and slides showing their 2030 hopes.

There has been some speculation that the Government might downgrade plans to build a high speed east-west rail line over the Pennines, in light of mounting costs.

Instead of a rapid trip to the capital, people in Leeds will have an overground rail service

Leeds residents will be able to take an overground train service instead of taking a quick trip to London. 

Opponents of HS2 have warned it will cost £150 billion.

Mr Johnson said during the Tory leadership contest it was likely to exceed £100 billion.

This summer, Lord Berkeley, who was deputy chairman of Mr Johnson’s review of the scheme, wrote to Cabinet Secretary Simon Case calling for an inquiry into whether the Government had misled Parliament over the costs.

Tory MPs have urged the Government to put HS2 ‘out of its misery’.

HS2 Ltd – the Government-backed body set up to develop the scheme – has responded to the criticism, saying it is ‘a project for the next 100 years and beyond’.

It added: ‘It will add new capacity into our crowded rail network, better connect the great towns and cities of the North and Midlands, and accelerate the shift from cars and lorries to low-carbon rail.’