North West firms believe HS2 ‘will help boost business’

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More than a quarter of small and medium-sized businesses across the North West say they believe the high-speed rail project HS2 will have a positive effect on their business.

Of this figure, 44 per cent expect it to increase their growth potential by better connecting them to other UK cities. The figures are drawn from the results of the latest quarterly, Close Brothers Business Barometer, a survey that canvasses the views of small to medium-sized business owners and senior management.

Mike Randall, CEO of Close Brothers Asset Finance, said: “The HS2 high speed railway project will connect London Euston, the Midlands, North West England, Yorkshire and potentially also the North East of England and the Central Belt of Scotland.

“Enhanced connectivity should boost productivity and bring opportunities for increased trade. It’s also worth noting that it will give cities outside of London a chance to make a wider contribution to the economy.”

More than two fifths of those in the North West think that they will be able to access a greater talent pool thanks to reduced travelling time between cities.