New route would connect to Heathrow 11 years earlier than under current plan

Labour is to revise its high speed rail plan to court Tory voters, the Sunday Times has reported.

The plans are set to be announced by shadow transport secretary Maria Eagle at the Airport Operators Association later today. She will unveil a fresh plan for the high speed rail link between Birmingham and London which will avoid Tory heartlands in the Chilterns, Buckinghamshire and Warwickshire.

The new route proposed by Labour will include a transport hub at Heathrow, which would allow the airport to be connected to the high speed rail line by 2022, while the current route only proposes to complete this connection by 2033.

Eagle is set to tell the conference that not connecting the rail line to Heathrow from the start was a “huge mistake”, according to the newspaper.

The HS2 proposal was originally drawn up by Lord Adonis, in the final months of the Labour government.