A PETITION has been launched to oppose the Golborne Spur plans as part of the HS2 project.

Leigh MP James Grundy has launched the 'Say NO to the HS2 Golborne Spur' petition, calling upon residents to join the fight against the railway project.

The Golborne Spur, part of the high speed rail network's Phase 2b route, would run through Lowton and Golborne.

Mr Grundy, firstly as a councillor for Lowton East ward, and as Leigh’s MP, has been a vocal opponent of the Golborne Spur of HS2.

The Government has launched a new consultation on the remaining sections of HS2, including the Golborne Spur.

The MP is asking residents to sign the petition and demonstrate the local strength of feeling against this project.

Mr Grundy says he will include the results of the petition, including the number of signatures received, in his final consultation response to the Government.

Leigh Journal:

James Grundy, pictured with resident campaigners, has launched a petition against the proposed route

Conflicting reports had surfaced in February this year as the Leigh MP expressed his "relief" after Transport Secretary Grant Shapps had reportedly indicated the Golborne spur may be taken out of the HS2 project plans.

However, Wigan Council leader Cllr Molyneux, who has been a supporter of the HS2 plans which would bring a connection to the borough, said in February he had received a letter from the Transport Secretary outlining a commitment to the Phase 2b route.

On the launch of the petition, Mr Grundy said: “Since the Golborne Spur of HS2 was first proposed, local opposition to the project has been immense, with local community groups, businesses, and local residents coming together to fight against the controversial proposals.

“Thousands of families, including my own, are affected by the route of the Golborne Spur. Not only will it damage our local area by destroying precious green spaces, people's homes, and employment sites, it will also fail to provide us with any of the rewards, such as improved local rail connectivity in our area.

“This is why I have launched my “Say NO to the HS2 Golborne Spur” petition and calling for the help of Leigh residents, to continue to demonstrate to the Government our local opposition to this rail project.”

Meanwhile, Linda Graham, chair of Lowton West Residents, said: “HS2’s Golborne Spur is going to have a detrimental impact to the lives of local people. The proposed route will see our beautiful green spaces effectively destroyed, such as Byron Hall Wood, and will be a permanent scar on Lowton and Golborne.

“This is why I’ll be signing James Grundy MP’s petition against the Golborne Spur, as well as submitting my own response to the Government’s consultation.”

Ted Thwaite, chair of Lowton East Neighbourhood Development Forum, added: “The Golborne Spur of HS2 has no benefit for the local area, including the wider Wigan Borough. Local people want to see local rail connectivity improved to nearby towns and cities, rather than a rail project that will fail to reconnect our area to the local rail network.

“James Grundy MP has my full support in his fight against the Golborne Spur of HS2, and I hope that local residents will also sign his petition against this project.”