Independent Construction Commissioner to oversee HS2 Phase 2a route

Role extended to improve engagement with communities, businesses and individuals in Phase 2a of the project

Train speeding through a station.

• Sir Mark Worthington to oversee HS2 Phase 2a route from West Midlands to Crewe
• appointment marks the extension of his existing role to include oversight of Phase 2a as part of government work to improve accountability for the project
• commissioner will oversee decision making between HS2 Ltd and contractors, ensuring any issues during construction are resolved fairly

Homeowners and businesses affected by the construction of HS2 between the West Midlands and Crewe will have access to clear, impartial advice, enabling strong scrutiny of the project, after the Department for Transport extended the Independent Construction Commissioner’s role to cover Phase 2a of the project.

Sir Mark Worthington OBE will now have responsibility for managing issues and relationships between HS2 Ltd and individuals or bodies relating to construction work on both Phase One, from London to Birmingham, and Phase 2a, West Midlands to Crewe.

In his extended role, the Independent Construction Commissioner will work with communities, businesses and individuals along the West Midlands to Crewe route to improve engagement between building contractors and local communities. His focus will be resolving complaints relating to construction issues, as well as providing advice to members of the public on how they can raise concerns with HS2 Ltd.

The move represents another step by the government to maintain a strong level of scrutiny on HS2 Ltd’s community engagement and to ensure HS2 delivers on its requirement to be a good neighbour to all on the railway’s route.

HS2 Minister Andrew Stephenson said:

"The Independent Construction Commissioner adds important oversight to this project by ensuring there is a constructive and positive relationship between HS2 Ltd, its contractors and local communities. It also ensures all building-related decisions adhere to best practice, as set out by the department.

"I have no doubt Sir Mark will continue his impressive work as Commissioner, helping to develop constructive engagement between all parties and ensure HS2 is a good neighbour to all as it constructs this vital railway."

Since being appointed as Commissioner for Phase One in 2018, Sir Mark has developed considerable knowledge on HS2 and its contractors, and his continued governance will provide the project with added stability as it progresses through the next stage.

Sir Mark has more than 20 years of experience working with government and leading politicians both in the UK and abroad, including as Baroness Thatcher’s private secretary from 1992 to 2013.

Sir Mark Worthington said:

"I am grateful to the HS2 Minister and Secretary of State for extending my remit to cover Phase 2a of the HS2 project. It makes considerable sense at this time and I look forward to the renewed challenges."