CONCERNS have been raised that Thurrock will be badly affected if the Government’s £50billion high speed rail plan doesn’t get the go-ahead.

The HS2 line - planned from Euston, London, to stations in the North West of England - would free up capacity on existing lines for freight coming from ports such as London Gateway.

But the plans, which would blight miles of countryside, have been controversial.

MPs will vote, but it is thought at least 30 Torys will go against the proposals, making the support of Labour members crucial.

London Gateway opens next week and plans on distributing 30 per cent of its containers around the UK by rail.

Thurrock MP Tory Jackie Doyle-Price said: “Some think that HS2 will have no impact on the local economy in south Essex.

“Our primary industry is logistics and if we want our economy to grow we need the road and rail infrastructure in place to enable it to happen.

Thurrock Gazette: Jackie Doyle-Price

Concerns: Thurrock MP Jackie Doyle-Price says the borough's growing logistics industry could suffer if HS2 plans fall through

“If we wish to transport more freight by rail then we need to invest in new rail lines as the East and West Coast main lines are almost full. HS2 will free up more slots for freight traffic and will enable our ports sector to grow to its full potential.”

On Tuesday, the transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin presented a case for the high speed rail line, in which Network Rail claim HS2 would benefit the rail network by increasing capacity, including opening more paths for rail freight.

Mr McLoughlin said: “Now is the time to be bold and deliver a world class railway which Britain deserves and can truly be proud of. Future generations will not forgive us if we fail to take this opportunity.”