HS2 begins chairman search as Sir David Higgins stands down

David Higgins

HS2 Ltd is on the hunt for a new chair following Sir David Higgins’ announcement that he is to stand down from the position after four years.

HS2 Ltd said that Higgins’ departure  was “always envisaged” at the conclusion of his second term.

Higgins’ chairmanship has co-incided with a difficult period for the high-speed rail project. Last year saw the collapse of its £170M Phase 2b development partner contract with CH2M following a conflict of interest challenge by Mace. The company withdrew from the role, with Bechtel later picking up the contract.

Higgins is due to leave HS2 later this year, but the company has yet to confirm a leaving date.

An HS2 spokesperson said: “With Mark Thurston having been in place as our chief executive for nearly a year, now is the right time to start the search for a replacement.

“After serving two terms as chairman of HS2, setting a clear vision for what HS2 can achieve for the whole country, seeing phase 1 become an Act of Parliament and the route north of Birmingham clearly defined, David will be leaving HS2 in a very strong position.”