CALLS have been made to ‘reintroduce’ a section of HS2 railway which would run through High Legh.

Manchester City Council has told a government consultation into the designs for the Crewe to Manchester leg of the project it wants to see the ‘Northern Chord’ reinstated in plans.

However, one expert in the area has warned against the move.

The representation from Manchester City Council said: “Whilst HS2’s [design] proposal includes the Golborne Link, it does not include the HS2 Northern Chord.

“This chord, which is located at High Legh, was included in earlier HS2 proposals with the aim of enabling HS2 trains to travel from a depot proposed at Golborne (which has subsequently been relocated to Crewe) to Manchester.

“Whilst the depot has been relocated, MCC’s position is that the Northern Chord should be reintroduced to provide faster and greater capacity links from Scotland, Cumbria and Lancashire to Manchester and to reduce pressure on the existing Euston Junction to Manchester; Manchester to Preston; and Castlefield rail corridors.”

Despite the support from Mancunian councillors, Nigel Hennerley, who advises High Legh Parish Council on HS2 and climate change, has warned that the inclusion of the Chord will have a big impact on the area.

Mr Hennerley told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “The thing to consider with High Legh is a big triangle around it and a line going through the middle of it. People need to understand that it is not one line.

“It is a whole intersection at High Legh — if Northern Powerhouse Rail is to be built it pre-determines where that meets HS2.

“That means three lines coming out of High Legh.”

He also warned that passenger HS2 could result in serious negative damage to the atmosphere: “It is critical what happens in the next decade. HS2 will just chuck lots of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

“Even if it was the right thing to do in the long term, we do not have that now.”

In recent days, the bill authorising the construction of HS2 phase 2a — Birmingham to Crewe — was signed into law.

On the news, Cllr Craig Browne, deputy leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “This is a hugely important milestone and brings with it the powers and government commitment to bring high speed rail to Crewe and move to the construction phase.

“HS2 is a strategically important project and will drive increased business confidence to invest in Crewe.

“This will create opportunities to not only enhance the town of Crewe, but also the wider borough through the jobs, services and improved opportunities it can provide.”