The Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling, has strengthened the board of High Speed Two (HS2) Ltd with the appointments of Dame Judith Hackitt and Stephen Hughes to the board as non-executive directors (NEDs).
Both candidates bring with them a strong set of experience to help guide the construction of the largest infrastructure project in Europe:
Dame Judith Hackitt was the Chair of the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety and is Chair of manufacturing trade body Make UK (formerly EEF). She also holds non-executive positions at Made Smarter Commission, Imperial College Court, City & Guilds Group, and High Value Manufacturing Catapult. An engineer by profession, Dame Judith holds a degree in chemical engineering from Imperial College, London.
Stephen Hughes is a highly experienced local government leader, having served as Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council for nearly 10 years, as well as previously holding an executive role at Brent Council. An accountant by profession, Stephen is currently a non-executive director for Housing & Care 21 and Big Band Limited, holding a degree in Economics from Cambridge.
Alongside these new announcements, the Secretary of State also for Transport announced the re-appointment of 2 existing NEDs – Ed Smith and Roger Mountford – for a further 3 years.
It has also been announced that Andrew Wolstenholme has left the board of HS2 Ltd, having served on the board since June 2018.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: "The appointments of Dame Hackitt and Stephen Hughes will ensure that HS2 Ltd continues to have a world-class leadership team under Allan Cook CBE. I am also delighted that Ed and Roger will continue in their roles.
"Their collective wisdom and expertise will be invaluable in overseeing the construction of one of the UK’s most important infrastructure projects, ensuring we deliver on the opportunity of huge economic growth for the north and Midlands and improved journeys for passengers right across the country."
Allan Cook CBE, Chair of HS2 Ltd said: "Serving over 25 towns from Scotland to the south-east, HS2 links nearly half of the UK population. By better connecting the country it will boost economic growth and improve journeys for millions of people. With work on the first phase now well underway, I’m pleased to welcome Dame Judith and Stephen to the HS2 Ltd board. Their experience of industry, governance and leadership will add new strength to our board as we continue to deliver Britain’s transformative new high speed rail link."
Dame Judith Hackitt said: "Modernisation of our national infrastructure is vitally important for future growth and prosperity and the development and delivery of HS2 is an essential part of that. I am very much looking forward to joining the HS2 Ltd board and being part of this national project."
Stephen Hughes said: "I am delighted to be appointed to the board of HS2 Ltd. I have been passionate about this project for many years. It is not just about solving the problems with rail capacity, but it will also deliver significant regenerative benefits to our major cities and the regional economies they support. I am pleased to be able to help deliver those benefits in whatever ways I can."