Summary and implications

The Government recently confirmed the preferred route for the second phase of HS2, which will run from the West Midlands to Leeds and Manchester.

The Government also published safeguarding directions for land in the vicinity of the proposed route. Safeguarding is an established process for major infrastructure schemes which ensures that land which has been earmarked for such schemes is protected from other development.

A safeguarding direction does not necessarily mean that land subject to it will be acquired for HS2. However, for any planning application on safeguarded land, HS2 Limited is a statutory consultee. HS2 Limited is likely to oppose any significant development on safeguarded land to prevent development which would conflict with HS2, or avoid having to pay higher compensation to affected landowners.

The HS2 safeguarding maps are available here. If your land has been safeguarded, you should have received a notice from HS2 Limited but these notices do not always get sent to the correct people within each organisation. It is important that you act now to address the effect of HS2 on your property. Early engagement with HS2 Limited can help protect your position, by obtaining assurances in respect of your property or even securing amendments to the scheme itself.

Although HS2 is not scheduled for completion until 2033 land interests will be affected much earlier and you should take steps to protect your interests sooner rather than later.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.