Chancellor confirms phase two to open in 2027, six years earlier than originally planned

HS2 Woodesford

Chancellor George Osborne has confirmed the government will bring forward the extension of the HS2 line between Birmingham and Crewe six years earlier than planned.

The extension will now open in 2027, just a year after the completion of phase one of the project between London and Birmingham.

The government has also announced the appointment of CBI director general John Cridland as the first chair of the newly established Transport for the North (TfN).

Osborne said: “In my Spending Review we committed to the biggest rise in transport spending in a generation meaning that major projects like the construction of HS2, to link the Northern Powerhouse to the South, can begin.

“Bringing forward this part of the HS2 route by six years is a massive step in the right direction for the Northern Powerhouse where high speed rail will play a big role in connecting up the entire region with the rest of the country.”

It was revealed in September that bidders who have prequalified for the civils packages for phase one of HS2 will automatically be shortlisted for up to four lots of work on phase two, which will involve building the 50-mile stretch of the high-speed line to Crewe.