https://www.warrington.gov.uk/news/christmas-time-square

Online petition calls for all Mersey tolls to be scrapped

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AN online petition has been launched urging the Government to scrap all Mersey tolls following the u-turn on free use for Warrington residents using the new Mersey Gateway toll bridge, which opens this Autumn.

Already the petition has more than 1,100 names,including 149 from Warrington South and 41 from Warrington North.

Achieving 10,000 names will mean the government will respond to the petition and 100,000 names means it will be considered for debate in parliament.

Petition organiser Kenny Harper states that The River Mersey will end up with two bridges and two tunnels that will be tolled in the next 12 months.

He says the cost of the build, upkeep and repair of these huge national infrastructures have been given to the people of Merseyside.

“Who pays for the upkeep of the bridges & tunnels of The River Thames?

“The bridges and tunnels are part of the national infrastructure and should not be the responsibility of the people of Merseyside in the same way the bridge to Skye is not theirs to pay for, the Bridges of The Thames are not purely for the people of London.

“There are many roads, bridges & tunnels that are paid for nationally including the upkeep, I feel the same should be done on Merseyside.”

Halton residents will get free use of the toll bridge while the government u-turn on free use  for Warrington and Cheshire West and East residents has sparked outrage.

Warrington Borough Council leader Terry O’Neill is calling for an urgent review.

He said: “The fact that the Government has now performed a complete U-turn on this decision is shameful and just shows their pre-election statements were completely dishonest, contemptuous and misleading and perhaps Mr Mowat should be considering his position also.

Cllr O’Neill says he is not happy with this decision and he will be writing to Ministers to ask them to review it.”

Meanwhile Great Sankey South councillor Amanda king has gone a step further, calling for Mr Mowat to resign.

“David Mowat made this promise to Warrington South residents during the general election. He stood side by side with the Chancellor George Osborne and told us that Warrington residents would not have to pay tolls on the new Mersey Gateway bridge.

“I am not calling for him to consider his position as others have done, I am calling for him to resign with immediate effect.”

Mr Mowat, who says he worked for 18 months with ministers seeking a special case for residents said: “I’m bitterly disappointed that the Government has not been able to deliver on this pledge but it has only encouraged me to redouble my efforts to campaign for the critical infrastructure improvements we need right here in Warrington, such as the new bridges and the new station in west Warrington.”

To sign the petition CLICK HERE

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Experienced journalist for more than 40 years. Managing Director of magazine publishing group with three in-house titles and on-line daily newspaper for Warrington. Experienced writer, photographer, PR consultant and media expert having written for local, regional and national newspapers. Specialties: PR, media, social networking, photographer, networking, advertising, sales, media crisis management. Director Warrington Chamber of Commerce Patron Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace. Trustee Warrington Disability Partnership. Former Chairman of Warrington Town FC.

2 Comments

  1. I am completely bewildered at the stance this Government and Halton council have made on this issue. It appears that Halton Borough Council has been very clear since the project received initial approval from the Department for Transport back in 2006 that the only way the Mersey Gateway Bridge could be funded is by introducing tolls to it and the existing Silver Jubilee Bridge.

    It is the tolling of the existing bridge which is already part of the road network system and funded from UK taxpayers is what I take issue with. If there is no demand to use a new fast and congestion free bridge, then why are they building it in the first place? For example the government don’t levy a charge to use the M6 section of motorway that runs in parallel with the M6 toll road as this provides choice to drivers. If you want a quick and congestion free journey then you choose to pay.

    There is no consistency and joined up thinking in all of this. The proposed toll over the Silver Jubilee Bridge is a total disgrace and this Government’s approach underlines the complete contempt which they and Halton council view the driving public of Merseyside and their total inability to see the negative impact this will have on the economy of Halton. There needs to be an urgent review over the tolling of the existing bridge at the very least.

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