COMMUNITIES affected by the planned high speed rail route through Staffordshire are invited to a HS2 summit in Stafford next week.
Staffordshire County Council has arranged the event for representatives of community groups seeking the best outcome for their areas.
On Saturday around 100 Swynnerton residents packed in to the village hall to hear the latest in the campaign against the scheme.
They have formed an action group and Stone MP Bill Cash told them of his work in Parliament to campaign for better compensation measures.
Next week’s summit, open to community groups and parish councils, will include presentations on a number of HS2 topics, question and answer sessions and discussions on mitigation.
Mike Maryon, the county council’s cabinet member for highways and transport, said the event was designed to help residents make informed comment on the proposed route.
He added: ““The proposed second phase of the high speed rail route will cut through swathes of Staffordshire and, if it is to be imposed on us, we want to do as much as we can to minimise the impact on communities and the environment.
“We have learned from our experience in supporting communities affected by Phase One that it is essential to have a good grasp on the more technical aspects of the scheme if you really want to influence the design.
“The good news is that with public consultation starting in the summer there is still time for the voice of residents to be heard and to alter the proposed path, so as a county council we want to do everything we can to support communities put forward their case.
“The event is very much a practical workshop looking at areas such as positioning of tunnels and bridges, noise and ecology.”
Places are limited for Tuesday’s summit and any group representatives interested in attending should email firstname.lastname@example.org.