MP and rail activist Brian Binley has called for a new station to be built in Northamptonshire if the new high speed rail link goes ahead.
Mr Binley says a new station in Brackley would help ease the congestion on the West Coast Main Line, which currently serves Northampton rail users.
The Northampton South MP, and chairman of Northampton Rail Users Group, was speaking following last week’s announcement about a series of closures in the Watford area next year.
The Chron reported last week that a 12-mile section of the West Coast Main Line around Watford Junction station will be closed for 36 days between May 2014 and April 2015, as part of a £81 million Network Rail project to improve punctuality.
Mr Binley, who is a staunch supporter of the HS2 project, said: “If you are more than 100 years old, the chances are you will need a bit of help to prop you up and this is exactly the case with the West Coast Main Line.
“We should not be surprised. This is another reason why HS2 is so vital to the nation. There is a real problem with the West Coast Main Line – it is already up to capacity.”
Mr Binley says the 56,000 new homes planned for Northampton by 2035 will bring 120,000 people to the town, and the need to find 84,000 jobs.
He estimates 10,000 to 12,000 of these will still commute to London every day, and will need increased capacity.
The HS2 line would cut through south Northamptonshire, between Brackley and Upper Boddington, and has several opponents – including South Northamptonshire MP Andrea Leadsom.
Mr Binley said: “Everyone talking about it only taking 20 minutes of the journey to Birmingham is missing the point. It is really about capacity.
“The way to do this is not longer platforms or more carriages, it is a new connection to London.
“I will be calling for a station at Brackley. The speed is not that important. Not every train would stop at Brackley.”
Network Rail also touched on the subject of line speed when it announced the closures on the West Coast Main Line last week.
It says it intends to increase the speed of the lines through Watford to 125mph, from the current 80mph, but a London Midland spokesman said it was a “long way away” from being able to carry this out.