Clarification sought over Leigh MP's HS2 promise
6:20am Friday 28th February 2014 in North West
A CONSERVATIVE councillor has called on Leigh MP Andy Burnham to clarify his position on HS2.
Mr Burnham made national news after he gave an interview to the New Statesman which carried a headline that suggested he would rebel against a Labour whip on the high speed rail plans if changes are not made to the proposal.
But later the same day it was then reported that a spokesman for Labour leader Ed Miliband had said Mr Burnham had never used the words and 'supports Labour's collective position supporting HS2'.
Lowton east councillor James Grundy now wants Mr Burnham to clarify his position.
He said: "I don't understand how a spokesman can come out and say Mr Burnham didn't use those words when it is what he told 100 people at a public meeting that I attended.
"I want to know if he will stand by his promise he made to constituents and stand up to Ed Miliband or if he will give in to party pressure.
"It would be nice to know exactly what circumstances he would vote against the proposal."
Mr Burnham argued that the New Statesman's headline had put words in his mouth and he still supported the principle of HS2.
"My position hasn't changed but it has hardened," he told the Journal this week.
"I can see the case for HS2 but I believe what we are being offered by the Government is a bad deal for Leigh, Lowton and Golborne.
"The plans are still only a proposal, so it is too early to say yet whether I will vote for HS2 or not, but I am fighting Leigh's corner and would like to see changes to the depot plans and regarding a station.
"We will get all the destruction with none of the benefits in an area with the worst railway accessibility in the country, why should we accept that?"
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