Letter to Martin Tett addressing the above report.
14th June 2021
Wendover Dean Viaduct Schedule 17 Application 21/00860/HS2 - Noise Demonstration Report (NDR)
The publication of the Southdowns Noise Report on the subject Application NDR and your subsequent Decision Notice, which lists the 8 Southdowns Report Recommendations as Informative Conditions and Reasons, suggests that within BC there are serious misgivings about this Application which you hope will be corrected by the Promoter in subsequent Applications. We believe that commissioning the Southdowns study was money well spent and these Informative Conditions and Reasons would not have been registered had the study not been commissioned.
The excellent work of the LANC is compromised by this Application Approval, but since the LANC has been disbanded, there is no authoritative LFA centric forum in which to discuss this dilemma and to draw up a strategy to ensure the Promoter’s compliance with the various Assurances, EMRs and PFNs that form the framework that strives to protect the public, that you represent. It is obvious that hope will not in itself encourage the Promoter to comply, and your experience confirms that the Promoter has no intention of fulfilling its obligations negotiated in good faith in other areas and by the LANC. Derogation of Assurances 1025 and 1026 is the Promoters intention, but we would like to be assured that BC will not be party to this! It is clearly the Assurances’ intent that the Noise Prediction Model uncertainty figures should be applied to the PREDICTED model RESULTS during the DESIGN and CONSTRUCTION phases. Whereas, the Promoter wants to apply uncertainty to the measured operational noise figures and argue that it would be unreasonable, costly and impracticable to make changes post-design or post-construction should the operational noise figures be shown to not to meet either Assurances, IP E20 or PFN criteria.
We believe that this is a route-wide problem that needs to be corrected at the outset and would suggest that the LANC be re-formed as a matter of urgency to demonstrate unity across the LPAs.
Derogation of Assurances, EMRs and PFNs should be strongly resisted. Indeed the HS2 Minister has confirmed that derogation should not be the Policy. But the reality is that this is what will happen unless you resist it now, before the design work is beyond the point where it cannot be changed.
Sheila Bulpett ( Chair Wendover Parish Council)