That was the headline on a report in the October Railwatch magazine.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson went to Solihull on 4 September to see a start made on Birmingham's HS2 interchange station.
One journalist described it as a "secret" visit and surmised that Mr Johnson did not want to confront the vocal critics of Britain's second high-speed rail line. But The Times thundered "No turning back now as HS2 building work begins."
Mr Johnson told critics of the project: "HS2 has fantastic economic benefits and is also the cleanest, greenest mode of transport. If you want to get from London to Birmingham or from north of the country to London fast, it is far cleaner and a far smaller carbon footprint than by going by car and much less than by plane."
[...]pre-Covid there were more than 170 flights per day into London from various Scottish airports alone. That does not include Birmingham, Leeds and other internal destinations. High speed rail has the potential to replace most of them.
The design specification for HS2 trains includes a requirement for on-train cycle storage to allow for charging of e-bikes.
All that may be true, but there is no guarantee that normality post-Covid19 will require many physical journeys to be made into London. We have (with varying degrees of reluctance) got used to video-calling thanks to at least a dozen software packages on the market - many of them free for the non-professional user - faster broadband and faster processors in smartphones and desktop computers. Then there is the reduced economic activity thanks to Brexit to consider.
A straw poll of railway enthusiasts taken when the idea was first mooted came down only marginally in favour of the project. Against the estimated economic benefits the loss of biodiversity including ancient woodland had to be weighed. In London, many homes and a much-loved pub have already been demolished. One suspects that if that survey were taken again today, the Noes would be in the majority.
There is much less dispute about the value of the northern branches of HS2. The area has been crying out for better trans-Pennine communication and connections with the north Midlands. Yet that part of the project is a later stage and one fears that, Northern Powerhouse or no Northern Powerhouse, HM Treasury will postpone work there or even pull the plug after the London-Birmingham-Crewe line has been built.
By the government's own reckoning, 43 ancient woodlands will be affected to some degree. With no sense of shame, at the same time as Boris Johnson has signed up to a UN pledge to "put nature and biodiversity on a road to recovery by 2030" he threatens to use legislation which has just passed the Commons to overrule the Welsh government and concrete over the Gwent levels.