R. Ferry (letters last week) is right to raise again in regard to the election the mistaken decision to build HS2 on its present route.

This is the result of the last two Governments succumbing to flattery at an expensive engineering consultants’ presentation - being told that they would be seen as hi-tech, forward-thinking, clever politicians investing in the country’s infrastructure - and therefore no-one asking the right questions.

A high speed train is a laudable aim - more particularly in its northern branch, but choosing a green field site over developing, at half the cost, the existing railway corridor from London-Coventry-Birmingham is just plain wrong.

Digging up new land is always the easiest solution for developers, but as well as this new route destroying much of the countryside, it seriously damages existing business centres, especially in the Coventry and Leicester area, which will have no easy access.

Experts say it will likely happen, as the fares will be too expensive, that the small take-up will result in market manipulation to actually shrink the existing Coventry-London service to encourage more people to make the longer drive to the NEC.

Circumstances have moved on since this decision, and will move further by its completion. Coventry, Leamington and Warwick are now nationally and internationally recognised as growing centres of advanced technology in the electronics, software and engineering fields - the very industries we need for future growth.

Why is this decision going ahead when this area will actually gain nothing except environmental degradation and their own railway lines diminished?

When ‘Midlands Today’ was making the case for HS2 it used a Birmingham scrap-metal merchant’s yard and its merchandise as a demonstration of why it should be built.

Perhaps one of our local electronic companies could help him market his wares on the internet and save his visitors and the electorate a very expensive journey.

Ann Rignall, address supplied