RISHI Sunak’s decision to axe the northern leg of HS2 will lead to a resurgence in demand for Cheshire properties in areas blighted by the proposed railway, an estate agency claims.

The northern route of HS2 saw properties compulsory purchased in areas including Knutsford, High Legh, Lymm, Ashley and Hale Barns.

Homes near the railway but not compulsory purchased, were also impacted by the ongoing saga of the northern route.

Phillip Diggle, area director for Gascoigne Halman, said: “Property owners who live close to the scrapped northern leg are breathing a sigh of relief that the spectre of HS2 is no longer looming over their homes.

“In Ashley and Hale Barns, many properties have been held off the market for years because owners were unsure whether HS2 would be viewed positively or negatively by potential buyers.

“Now the line is officially scrapped, we expect to see a lot more local market activity over the coming months and an upswing in confidence from buyers and sellers.”

Picturesque locations in Lach Dennis, Plumley and Over Tabley were all due to be impacted by HS2 with several properties compulsory purchased in preparation for the line.

Dev Coiley, of Gascoigne Halman’s Knutsford branch, said: “It’s hard to imagine the impact HS2 would have had on the rural landscape here.

“So many stunning country properties including beautiful barn conversions were compulsory purchased for what has become a white elephant of nightmare proportions. 

“As estate agents, we know how personal properties are to people and we have enormous sympathy for everyone whose home was compulsory purchased against their wishes.

“It remains to be seen what will happen to all the Cheshire properties that government now owns, but we hope a sympathetic outcome that is considerate of the previous owners will be sought.”

The Knutsford property market has remained stable over recent years with local house hunters remaining loyal to the area, despite HS2’s planned route. 

Now the line is scrapped, Gascoigne Halman predicts Knutsford will become even more sought after as a prime Cheshire location.

Dev added: “Knutsford and its surroundings have always had consistently strong interest.

 “But with HS2 off the table I expect its popularity will increase even further as people are attracted to the blend of town and country living that can be enjoyed here.

“It’s a great location and one that can be enjoyed by residents of all ages.”