An anti-HS2 campaigner is to stand in the general election.
Retired accountant Nicholas Ward has put himself forward as a candidate for the Westminster North seat in the House of Commons.
Standing as an ‘independent candidate against High Speed 2’, Ward will compete for votes next month with representatives of Labour, the Conservatives, the Liberal Democrats, UKIP, the Green Party and the Christian Party.
The government’s £43bn HS2 scheme has support from Labour and the Liberal Democrats; a bill is going through Parliament to allow work to begin; and procurement notices have been issued.
But Ward said on his campaign website: “I have one simple objective – to try to stop HS2, the government’s vanity project to drive a new high speed rail line from Euston through North and West London and then on through the English countryside to Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester.
“I am not sure why it should ever be necessary to tear apart London and the counties along the HS2 route in order to rebalance the economy in the north of England. It most certainly should not happen unless the case is overwhelming.
“The problem is that there is no effective opposition to HS2. The three main parties are all in favour of the project and the smaller parties who oppose HS2 have other baggage which may make them unattractive to many electors who oppose HS2. That is why I am standing in this election.”