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04-05-2021, 08:00 AM
1

Abuse of power

https://www.newcivilengineer.com/lat...ge-28-04-2021/

There are mounting concerns about Highways England’s plans to demolish or infill hundreds of bridges and tunnels as part of its management of the estate.
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04-05-2021, 05:04 PM
2

Re: Abuse of power

Can’t leave owt alone lol
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04-05-2021, 09:07 PM
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Re: Abuse of power

https://www.railstaff.co.uk/2021/04/...il-structures/


The Committee makes clear that the Estate is not only part of our national heritage, but includes many assets with demonstrable public value. It says that the formal agreement under which Highways England manages the structures should be amended to reflect their cultural and strategic importance.

Chair Huw Merriman MP voices the Committee’s concern at the likely impact of the proposed infilling and demolition programme on future rail and greenway projects. He also challenges the use of Permitted Development powers which, in many cases, Highways England is invoking to progress work on structures that are effectively safeguarded from adverse development through policies adopted by local councils.

“The future of these historic bridges, viaducts and tunnels should be determined by an open, transparent and democratic process”, says Mr Merriman. “Highways England should assess both the safety and value of these structures and, in non-urgent cases, apply to local authorities for planning permission, if it wishes to demolish or infill them.”

He goes on, “we understand the average cost of infilling is around £145,000 per bridge, whereas the costs of strengthening to increase the capacity of historic bridges can be much lower, at £20,000 to £40,000 per bridge. We would like to know why it is better use of public money to infill, rather than strengthen, the bridges affected by the programme.”

The Committee notes that Highways England has objected to planning applications for new walking and cycling routes that are proposed to pass beneath HRE structures and has fenced-off parts of the Estate to which the public previously had access. Highways England and the DfT are asked to set out what steps they are taking to facilitate and encourage access to as much of the Estate as possible.

Graeme Bickerdike, a member of The HRE Group, said: “We welcome the Transport Committee’s scrutiny of the approach being taken by Highways England in managing the Historical Railways Estate. Supported by the DfT, the company is guilty of an assault on our great railway heritage and democratic process, pulling the rug from under those who are trying to build a better future for their communities.

“In Herefordshire, Northumberland, East Renfrewshire and elsewhere, proposals for new active travel routes are now in doubt because Highways England is recklessly pursuing infilling and demolition schemes without engineering justification or any prior appraisal as to the impacts of their actions.

“At a time when the value of fresh air and green space has never been clearer, it is unsustainable for the Government to allow vandalism of this kind if it expects us to take seriously its stated commitment to driving an active travel revolution.”

A petition against Highways England’s plans, launched by The HRE Group, has so far been signed by more than 12,300 people.
The Victorians built things to last, typical that Highways England want to destroy anything that reminds them they are not as resourceful.
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05-05-2021, 01:36 AM
4

Re: Abuse of power

How very sad as I watch religiously travels around Britain by railway series and enjoy watching my our heritage!
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05-05-2021, 08:14 AM
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Re: Abuse of power

This should be made wider public knowledge....I'm fairly sure there would be a lot of protests going on to stop it.
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05-05-2021, 11:38 AM
6

Re: Abuse of power

Originally Posted by Pixie Knuckles ->
This should be made wider public knowledge....I'm fairly sure there would be a lot of protests going on to stop it.
https://road.cc/content/news/268065-...cy-powers-over

Think they have met their match.

“This is ruthless vandalism by cowboys and idiots,” said the Queensbury Tunnel Society.

Norah McWilliam, leader of the Queensbury Tunnel Society, said: “This is nothing short of ruthless vandalism on Highways England’s part.

“For the past six years, we’ve worked tirelessly to secure this fabulous historic asset as an active travel route, but our efforts have been persistently blighted by Highways England’s failings.

“Once again, their car-crash abandonment scheme has almost been sunk by flooding, so they’ve now resorted to unlawfully abusing emergency powers to keep it afloat. There is no emergency situation at this shaft; in fact there’s no real situation of any kind there.

“If these civil servants think they can get the better of us by attempting to circumvent statutory planning processes, they can think again.
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05-05-2021, 05:05 PM
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Re: Abuse of power

Originally Posted by bret ->
How very sad as I watch religiously travels around Britain by railway series and enjoy watching my our heritage!
Quite a few HR' s in Australia. Assuming they don't have this nonsense to contend with.

Zig Zag railway has suffered badly due to bush fires.
 

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