Plans for Severn crossing still unclear, says FTA
The call comes from the Freight Transport Association (FTA), following its Severn Bridge Summit at Westminster on 7 June, which saw stakeholders, businesses and bridge users join invited MPs to put questions to Transport Minister Andrew Jones.
The message from the Transport Minister was “wait for the consultation”, but FTA is now urging the Government to implement more effective payment methods to reduce congestion – or better still cut or abolish the tolls.
The Minister was asked a range of questions from the floor including the suggestion that the tolls should either be scrapped or reduced to a figure which covered only maintenance costs. The Minister agreed the tolls were particularly high and said agreement set out in the Severn Rivers Act had failed to future-proof users from a year-on-year increase.
FTA chief executive David Wells, who chaired the meeting, said: “The Government must provide some clarity on its plans for the bridges. FTA would welcome a reduction in tolls to maintenance costs only. This summit and the range of views expressed highlight the importance of developing a solution to what are some of the most expensive tolls in the country, administered by outdated payment methods which just add to congestion.”