A kilometre of hedgerow to be cleared by HS2 in Quainton

The red line indicates where the hedgerow will be removed
The red line indicates where the hedgerow will be removed

Work is set to start in Quainton in September which will strip 1000 meters of hedgerow, vital for local ecosystems.

The Bucks Herald has been campaigning for HS2 to stop all of their preparatory works in Aylesbury Vale until the result of the 'Government Spending Review' which takes place in December.

The HS2 project still hasn't received official 'notice to proceed', but preparatory works continue nonetheless.

The work will continue to through the Winter, with work expected to be finished in the autumn.

The work will see 12 mature trees removed and a kilometre of hedgerow.

Matthew Stanton, Head of Planning, Policy and Advocacy at Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust said our natural environment is in a perilous position thanks to HS2, and has called for a halt to all clearance work immediately.

He said: "Hedgerows are a vital source of food and habitat for some of our most endangered species, such as the black hair streak butterfly. They take years to mature and establish so the idea that you can rip out a kilometre of hedgerow and simply plant it elsewhere is fanciful.

"Similarly with a mature tree line, one cannot simply cut down trees and plant new trees as compensation.

"New habitats should have been established years ago to give them time to mature and become viable habitats before such hedgerows and trees are torn up.

"Our natural environment is in a perilous position as HS2 want to destroy parts of it, despite the fact that HS2 might be cancelled by Christmas leaving no company left to put right the damage caused.

"All clearance works must stop immediately."

The work will be taking place on Station Road in Quainton, near to the Quainton Railway Centre as indicated on the red line on the accompanying photo.

Rachel O'Brien, who lives 3/4 of a mile from the works in Quainton said:

"I just cannot believe how HS2 are carrying on with the works regardless of the upcoming review.

"Quainton is a quiet and peaceful village, has everything you'd ever want but this is going to be destroyed by the HS2 project.

"We are told of all these grandiose plans for new trees and nature reserves, but as we've seen previously these trees aren't maintained and have died."

Rachel is referring to 350,000 trees planted in Warwickshire, of which 80% died in the 2018 draught.

Campaign groups at the time branded it an 'environmental disaster'.

Rachel continued: "This is a huge amount of our local ecosystem that will be removed - so where does the nature go?

"The newly created environments need years to become suitable for wildlife, so in the interim what will happen?

"At the very least HS2 should be waiting until they get the go ahead from the Government, if it's cancelled we'll be left with a massive blot on the beautiful Aylesbury Vale landscape."

Rachel hit out at our local politicians, both David Lidington and John Bercow who have 'failed to stand up for residents' because of their roles in the UK Parliament which bound them to Government policy.

"We feel completely let down by our local politicans. More should have been done, and more should be done now."

What do you think? Let us know - thomas.bamford@jpress.co.uk