Steerpike

HS2 seeks a new narrative

HS2 seeks a new narrative
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What with Covid, Ukraine and the levelling-up agenda, fiscal probity is somewhat old-fashioned now in Westminster. So it's unsurprising then that the billion-pound boondoggle of HS2 carries on winding its way through the political process, despite mounting costs and time delays. Having dragged on for more than a dozen years, the, er, high-speed rail project has acquired something of a reputation for mismanagement.

So it's perhaps unsurprising then that the company between the scheme, HS2 limited, is now hiring for a new 'narrative manager' to develop and maintain the 'core HS2 story' on a salary of up to £45,000. Looks like the 'story' will have a happy ending for the lucky hire at least.

That's not the only post up for grab of course: with MPs like Philip Davies continuing their unhelpful habit of tabling critical questions, a new £49,000 'stakeholder manager' is being recruited to manage key relationships with 'MPs, their offices and council leaders' along the route of the new railway. Given the die-hard opposition which MPs like Davies, Esther McVey and others continue to mount to the project, Mr S wonders just how close those relationships will actually be.

A billion here, a billion there: pretty soon you're talking real money.

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to steerpike@spectator.co.uk or message @MrSteerpike

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