George Osborne announces free trips across both Silver Jubilee and Mersey Gateway bridges for Halton residents

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne today announced free trips across both Silver Jubilee and Mersey Gateway bridges for all Halton residents.

Cllr Rob Polhill, Leader of Halton Council, said:

“Halton Borough Council is absolutely delighted by the Chancellor’s announcement earlier today that the Government will provide the additional funding which will ensure free trips across Silver Jubilee Bridge and the new Mersey Gateway Crossing for all Halton residents.”

David Parr, Chief Executive of Halton Council, said:

“This fabulous outcome for Halton residents is due to the determination of Cllr Rob Polhill, Leader of Halton Council, and our local MPs Derek Twigg and Graham Evans.

“Since the Government approved the scheme back in 2006, Halton Council and our MPs have worked tirelessly, with Steve Nicholson and the Mersey Gateway Team, behind the scenes, to persuade Government to meet the full cost of tolls for ALL Halton residents. This has been a long process and not many believed we would achieve our aim, but we have.”

Steve Nicholson, Interim Chief Executive of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board, said:

“The £250 million savings we have made on the project through our innovative approach to procurement has helped make a toll free crossing for local residents more affordable to Government. I would like to thank the project team and also our contractors, Merseylink for delivering such vital procurement savings.”

Cllr Rob Polhill concluded:

“This is great news for the people of Halton, and I would like to say a personal “thank you” to Derek Twigg MP who has championed our cause in Parliament, and also to Graham Evans MP who has also played an important role in the cross-party discussions.

“We will now begin the process of detailing the new scheme and will release more detail in due course.“