The Supreme Court (Lord Neuberger (President), Lady Hale (Deputy President), Lord Mance, Lord Kerr, Lord Sumption, Lord Reed and Lord Carnwath) dismissed appeals by the HS2 Action Alliance, Heathrow Hub Limited and a number of local authorities (see  EWCA Civ 920;  EWHC 481 Admin) arising out of the decision of the Government to promote the high speed rail link from London to the north known as HS2. The decision was announced in a command paper, “High Speed Rail: Investing in Britain’s Future – Decisions and Next Steps” (Cm 8247, 10 January 2012) referred to as the “DNS”. The DNS included confirmation of the Government’s high speed strategy and a summary of its decisions, and set out the process by which the Government intended to obtain development consent for HS2 through two hybrid bills in Parliament.
The main issues were (i) whether the DNS should have been preceded by a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) under Directive 2001/42/EC (“the SEA Directive”), and (ii) whether the hybrid bill procedure, as currently proposed, will comply with the procedural requirements of Directive 2011/92/EU (“the EIA Directive”).
David Elvin QC appeared for HS2 Action Alliance, instructed by SJ Berwin LLP.
Tim Mould QC, James Maurici QC, Jacqueline Lean and Richard Turney appeared for the Secretary of State for Transport, instructed by the Treasury Solicitor.