Carrington Bridge Campaign continues – Walker welcomes Government recognition for strategic importance

Worcester’s MP, Robin Walker has once again taken forward his long running campaign to dual the A4440 including the Carrington Bridge by raising roads investment in Worcestershire at today’s Transport Questions. This follows his recent Westminster Hall debate on the issue and numerous letters to and meetings with Ministers over the last few months including the Transport Secretary’s visit to Worcester during the General Election.

Today Robin asked:

“What plans his Department has to relieve congestion and support growth through investment in roads in Worcestershire.”

The Minister’s initial reply was:

“Tackling congestion and supporting local economic growth are key priorities for this Government, and we have plans for significant investment in Worcestershire’s road infrastructure to deliver those goals. This includes over £100 million of funding to improve local roads, and a number of upgrades to the M5 in Worcestershire.”

Robin followed up by asking:

“I am very grateful to the Minister for that answer and, indeed, for his response to my recent Westminster Hall debate on the Carrington bridge and Worcester southern link. He will be aware that the Department classifies the southern link as a local road, but in fact it has enormous strategic importance, linking Worcestershire to Herefordshire, and upgrades to it have the support of the Worcestershire local enterprise partnership and the Marches local enterprise partnership, as well as of a large number of local authorities. Will he therefore take into account the strategic importance of that road in any decisions about funding?”

And the Minister confirmed:

“I do indeed recognise the importance of the A4440 and the Carrington bridge. It is of clear strategic importance to both counties, a point recognised by the county council, by the local enterprise partnership and by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State, who has visited it personally. That is why we have confirmed we will work with the county council to determine how further stages of the proposal can be taken forward.”

Commenting on this Robin said:

“Establishing the strategic importance of the upgrades to our roads is vital if we are to secure Government funding to take these projects forward. Given the sums involved and the scale of the challenge, I am delighted to see the Minister confirm both that he recognises the strategic importance of the project and that the Government is ready to work with our Council. I will keep pressing to make sure this essential improvement takes place as soon as possible.”

 

Notes to editors

To read the full exchange in the Commons today see:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/hansard/commons/todays-commons-debates/read/unknown/71/

Robin raised the importance of this upgrade in his speech on the budget earlier this week which can be found here:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmhansrd/cm150713/debtext/150713-0002.htm#150713-0002.htm_spnew42

He also recently held a Westminster Hall debate on the matter details of which can be found here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmhansrd/cm150616/halltext/150616h0002.htm#15061662000281

Robin has made securing funding for the dualling one of his key campaigns:

http://www.walker4worcester.com/campaigns/

He won support from Worcestershire’s neighbours in Herefordshire and the Marches LEP just before the 2010 election and ensured this was rapidly put to the Transport Secretary:

http://www.walker4worcester.com/welcome-support-from-our-neighbours-for-carrington-bridge-dualling/