How right Paul Dainton is to campaign to have Charles Waterton’s Walton Park made a World Heritage Site.
Not only is it historically very significant, but it remains an oasis of natural peace and quiet. How Waterton fought for it!
The published plans for HS2 around the east of Wakefield are small scale and deliberately printed “dimmed”, but according to my reckonings, HS2 will cut through the walled area of the park on an embankment, close to Waterton’s grave and separating his park from the recreational lakes at Wintersett and Anglers.
From government response I have received, those planning the route seem to be unaware of this. I wonder if the route has ever been properly “walked”? If it had, then would Leeds’ “tallest” Bridgewater Place tower have been threatened with compulsory purchase for the scheme? Is that a demonstration of the care which has gone into planning HS2?
It really is time that someone pointed out that this particular Emperor has no clothes- years too late and likely to marginalise Wakefield as a rail and commercial centre, while having a major impact on the local environment.
It may be fairly safe to think that the scheme will never happen as it gets kicked further and further into the long grass, but the blight will be around for years.
Our local MPs need to act together now to have this scheme withdrawn and the money spent on parts of our transport infrastructure which are more immediate and worthwhile.
Leeds may be promised HS2 tomorrow, but can’t even obtain a tram service today.