The BBC have produced a nice piece of propaganda  for the government putting the case for High Speed Trains….attempting to both use the romance of rail travel and some ‘hard facts’ that suggest large government HST can save us from disaster.

It is in fact a rather curious piece for the BBC in that it not only enthuses about private investment in the railways, it has a wonderfully ‘Monty Python’ moment with a union man berating British Rail boss Peter Parker, and it also gives an almost glowing testimony to Mrs Thatcher…saying she improved the rail service more than it had been in the previous 20 years (and states Privatisation came after her term in office).

Or rather talking heads were allowed to say such things….such as Prue Leith (once on the Board of BR) saying she was always annoyed by people always clamouring about the Japanese Bullet Train without saying how much it cost and how long it took to develop and how much further improvement it has had since….how unsocialist actually looking at the cost of some great project!

Still you can’t help thinking this was a programme with a message at a time when the government are nearing making a final decision on giving the latest High Speed train development the go ahead.  Note the weighted references to lack of government investment and industrial, economic and political troubles… that meant to resonate now? 

Are they suggesting a massive investment in a single rail line will ‘save’ the country?

You make your own mind up, here are some quotes from various interested parties on the programme:

‘This is the story of how we rediscovered our love affair with high speed rail travel.

During a period of industrial gloom and political upheaval how did the unexpected triumph of the Intercity 125 help save British Rail and give us the Age of the Train?

With inadequate government investment, criticised as overstaffed, out of date and a waste of public money, Parker didn’t have much to smile about as he attempted to modernise the railway at a time of cutbacks.

Their was too much short termism…when you build something like the High speed Train you’ve got something with a life of maybe 30 years.

Parker knew he had to change the way we thought about the railways and he had to take on the doubters.

His legacy lives on. This is still the age of the High speed Train…we owe it to the 125 for rescuing British Rail from destruction, from near collapse in the 70’s. If it hadn’t been for the 125 we’d have been in real trouble.

I think the HST is a train whose time is still coming.’

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14 Responses to CHUFFING HECK

  1. That makes total sense - not! says:

    What the hell are you on about, Alan? Pro-government propaganda? You can’t help thinking that YOU haven’t thought this through. I’ve made my mind up, thank you. You’re talking complete bollocks.


    • Alan says:

      Good to see we have the odd genius reading the blog…perhaps you could also read the news occasionally and catch up with the real world.

      Government wants HS2, BBC wants HS2.

      Work it out genius.


      • Chilli says:

        I actually thought the program was OK – fun to see those old Jimmy Saville ads again – and my Intercity125 trainset. I agree the timing of the program to coincide with the HS2 issue could be viewed as pro-HS2 propaganda. But, you could also argue from an unbiased editorial standpoint that, given HS2 is in the news, it’s interesting to look back at British Rail. I didn’t detect any overt bias, and it certainly didn’t change my opinion that HS2 is a gigantic waste of money.


  2. DJ says:

    Yep, it’s another variation of the BBC’s Keynesian obsessions combined with Marxist giganticism. All our problems are down to a lack of Hero projects. We just need to build railway lines and tidal barrages and universities and everything else, except a third runway at Heathrow.

    Of course, this does relieve them of the responsibility to examine how business is actually done in Britain, or increasingly not done at all. The BBC’s non-reporters can stay walled up in HQ instead of having to go out there and deal with dirty scum in ‘trade’.

    Meanwhile, even if the BBC’s Keynesian monomania is terminal, can’t we at least get someone to admit that Mr Balls isn’t even calling for infrastructure spending: the whole point of ‘too far and too fast’ is that he wants to turn the clock back to 2005 and splurge the cash on more Bottom Inspectors and Recycled Lesbian Smoking Cessation Officers?


  3. London Calling says:

    It all depends on your point of view.
    A high speed link either allows Tory Windfarm owners to get from London to Scotland in less time, or allows the Scottish alcoholic Tourettes sufferers to escape from Scotland to London more quickly.

    However we already have a high speed link between London and Scotland. It is called “EasyJet”.


  4. silverfox says:

    er… I’m confused. I’ve been reading this blog for a couple of weeks and thought it was all about pro Labour bias. Have I missed something?


    • Alan says:

      It’s about BBC bias in any shape or form….and HS2 was a Labour project to start with, the BBC seem to approve of it having listened to their thoughts on the subject (no doubt the link to Manchester and Salford influences that) and now they support the ‘enemy’, as they used to support Cameron when they thought he was one of them, because he wants HS2.


  5. Stewart S says:

    The interesting thing about about that program, Re. BBC bias.Was how the the narrator continual tried to
    cast Thatcher as the villain of the piece,despite every ‘talking head’ steadfastly refusing to play ball.
    I could imagine the leading questions be asked of
    camera,and the interviewers sour face when failing to
    get the desired result. In fact it was the trade unions that came off worse (clearly intentionally).Id love to know what ending up on the cutting room floor
    On the wider topic of high speed trains,one of said
    ‘talking heads’ made the valid point that while we do need to modernise our rail network we do not need a European style 200+ mph system I speak as some one with a little first hand knowledge.

    P.S has anyone else had problems accessing this site for the past couple of days?


  6. Jim Edgar says:

    Looking at the map, that’s not propaganda for the Government or Network Rail. They’re bigging up the West Coast route and will no doubt use this to enforce their hero beardie Branson’s claim on that route

    Wonder why a high speed East Coast link fails to excite the Salford-based beeb?


  7. Amounderness Lad says:

    Don’t be fooled into thinking the B-BBC has suddenly been converted to supporting the Tory led Government because it has started pushing HS2 Propaganda.

    The B-BBC does have agendas which override their usual line on domestic politics. One is obviously their propaganda exercises over Global Warming and another is their fanatical belief in the Grande European Project and HS2 falls into both categories.

    Not only is HS2 supposed to become a “green” replacement for domestic air travel but it is also part of the EU’s integration mania. The EU requires HS2 to be built so it will become part of an EU wide fully integrated High Speed Rail Network which will link the whole of Britain into the European High Speed Rail Network via the Channel Tunnel.

    Whilst our politicians are trying to sell the fiasco to us as a method of speeding up passenger services the reality is that it is about moving freight around the EU at greater speeds. Besides, the main driving force in the Coalition behind HS2 are the LibDems who are totally in tune with the B-BBC over both the EU and the Great Global Warming Scam.


  8. Aerfen says:

    Spot on Amounderness Lad.
    Supporting the HS train is also absolutely consistent with their desire to ‘improve’ the infrastructure i.e. expand it to cope with mass immigration. In the same way as they are keen to build more houses, new towns , reservoirs, schools and universities. If they are in any way ‘Green’ all the better, but that takes second place to the *overriding* desire is to enable more immigrants to settle here without the infrastructure cracking and causing civil unrest. Wildlife and conservation is, relatively speaking, a very very minor issue to Beeboids.


  9. Ian Hills says:

    The influence of the EU and its transport plans can’t be overstated. Brussels doesn’t give the beeb British taxpayers’ money for nothing. See map at –

    Click to access viewer


  10. Pah says:

    Rip up the railways and replace them with roads. Put all the commercial traffic on the new roads and leave the old ones to cars …

    Just a thought.


  11. lojolondon says:

    In the old days, creating a railway would provide work for thousands of unemployed.
    Now, it will provide work for two Austrian blokes and a massive earth-flattening-concrete-laying-rail-installing machine.
    Total EU-inspired waste of money and effort.