Let me begin this update on the campaign to protect South Kirkby Camp (and nearby residents) from the clutches of HS2 by emphasising that regardless of the changes in leadership of any office of Government the office itself should still operate as normal and residents, citizens, stakeholders etc should still be responded to in a timely manner. The residents of South Kirkby deserve better than waiting from the 2nd of December to the 8th of February for a response to a correspondence, as has been the case. This is indicative of the way in which big Government treats small communities and it is simply not fair.
I am of course referring to my correspondence to the Department for Transport, in which i made it clear that… The very delayed response has been, as always, a complete fob off. In a letter from Nusrat Ghani, the Member of Parliament now responsible for HS2 the residents of South Kirkby have once again been told that we must wait for the environmental assessment to take place before any commitments are made and for us to contact the Department for Transport again following the Working Draft Environmental Statement being completed in mid 2018 when “a more productive conversation can be had”. Of course, as usual, we are advised to liaise directly with HS2 Ltd (but as we know our voices are simply ignored by what is a faux and sham ‘consultation’ team employed by said group.
However, this response left open the possibility that Nusrat Ghani would be interested in meeting with us following the Working Draft Environmental Statement being completed, after all we are encouraged to contact the Department for Transport at this time for a “productive conversation”. I of course have extended the invitation to Nusrat Ghani to meet with us at South Kirkby Camp at such a time, we will see if the new minister responsible for HS2 is as good as their word…
My response to Nusrat Ghani is as follows:
Dear Nusrat Ghani,
Thank you for your response to our campaign team correspondence regards our fight to save South Kirkby Camp (a nationally important and scheduled monument) from any negative impact caused by the planned route of HS2. Firstly on behalf of the campaign team let me extend a warm welcome to you in your new role as minister responsible for the HS2 project, we welcome this change and wish you luck in the role. Secondly, we must again stress as we did to Paul Maynard that in our area HS2 Ltd and their consultation team have failed the public badly. As a result we simply cannot be expected to trust in them nor communicate with them, they are not fit for purpose which is why we prefer to discuss our campaign directly with the Department for Transport and elected ministers.
Finally, we wholeheartedly welcome your invitation to discuss the case of South Kirkby Camp with us following the completion of the Working Draft Environmental Statement in mid 2018 and thereby wish to formally invite you as minister responsible for HS2 to meet with myself, Yorkshire Party colleagues, local residents, the local media and Historic England representatives at such a time. Please confirm your attendance to said meeting with urgency.