HC Deb 20 May 1994 vol 243 c596W
Mr. Spearing

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will state the nature of written or oral evidence given by, or on behalf of, his Department, to the Private Bill Committee considering the Crossrail Bill in respect of(a) cost restraint relative to protection of the environment or property, (b) difficulty or prohibition of through running to and from Heathrow airport and (c) obstacles to, or prohibition of links, in east London to the projected union railway.

Mr. Norris

My right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Transport, for the Environment and for National Heritage submitted a report to the Committee on 14 July 1993. The Secretary of State for Transport submitted a further report on 15 October 1993. I gave evidence to the Committee on 16 March 1994 and a senior departmental official gave evidence to the Committee on 14 April 1994. In addition, a substantial amount of material relating to Government studies of the scheme was made available to the Committee on 11 April. On the same day a letter was sent to the Committee at official level on the subject of links to Union Railways.

None of the evidence given dealt specifically with the subject of cost restraint relative to protection of the environment or property, although broad estimates of the cost of land and property purchase and special works needed to protect buildings and restore worksites were made available in the copies of the studies referred to above. The Bill makes provision for a juhction in the vincinity of Hayes, which would enable Crossrail trains to run through to Heathrow.

A substantial amount of written and oral evidence was given in respect of links to the second channel tunnel rail link. Transcripts of the oral evidence are of course available. The burden of the evidence was that the proposed link at Forest Gate/Ripple lane had been ruled out, but it remained open to the private sector promoters of the two railways to decide whether they wanted a connection and, if they did, to seek the necessary powers and to pay for it.