Tag Archives: Chancellor George Osborne

Proposed site for Operation Stack lorry area announced

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Transport Secretary has announced proposed site for Operation Stack lorry area to be created near Stanford in Kent.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has announced that a new lorry area will be created near Stanford in Kent, to ease issues caused by Operation Stack and provide a long term solution to problems on the M20 and surrounding roads.

The new lorry area will help keep the M20 moving during cross-channel services, avoiding the level of disruption that comes with Operation Stack, which has caused issues for companies and other drivers and residents.

Operation Stack was used on a record 32 days last year as the area was hit with unprecedented disruption in the summer, which was followed by the Autumn Statement, in which the government announced it would be providing up to £250M for a permanent lorry area.

Lorry_area2.jpgChancellor George Osborne said: “We are taking bold action to deal with the severe inconvenience suffered by people living and working in Kent when cross-channel services are affected.

“A long-term solution that will keep traffic moving has been talked about for decades, but now we are delivering it. I look forward to construction starting as soon as possible.

Patrick McLoughlin, Secretary of State for Transport, said: “Operation Stack is only ever used as a last resort but we recognise the impact it has on roads in Kent, and are determined to deliver an alternative solution.

“The new lorry area by the M20 will deliver better journeys for drivers and will not only support the region’s economy but also businesses as far away as Scotland that rely on the M20 to access the Port of Dover and the Channel Tunnel.

“We have committed up to £250 million for the lorry area and we are now making it a reality.”

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A total of 3,600 lorries will be able to park in the area, with the government looking at the idea of overnight parking to prevent drivers parking in unsuitable or illegal positions.

Balfour Beatty have been appointed as lead contractor for the project, which is west of the M20 junction 11 at Stanford West.

New entry and exit slip roads will be built on the eastbound carriageway, providing direct access to the lorry park.

Jim O’Sullivan, Highways England Chief Executive said: “The Secretary of State has asked us to progress a lorry area between Sellindge and Stanford. Direct access from the M20 means less lorries using local roads.

“We will work closely with residents and local stakeholders to ensure the design of the new lorry area minimises its social and environmental impact, while meeting the wider need to address this issue for Kent and the UK.”

Written responses were provided by 1,300 people, along with more than 1,000 drivers, residents and workers attending eight public events during the consultation on the lorry park.

The majority of people supported the idea, with less than a quarter thinking that Operation Stack should continue in its current form. The next step with be a consultation on the details and environmental impact the scheme will have.

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9 New Prisons & 3,000 New Homes Announced

New Prison Template

Chancellor George Osborne and Justice Secretary Michael Gove have today unveiled plans to build 9 new prisons in England and Wales.

The new prisons should allow the government to close old Victorian prisons in city centres and sell the sites for housing.

The Government estimates that over 3,000 new homes can be built, boosting house building in urban areas and helping thousands of working people achieve their dream of owning a home. The Victorian prison site at Reading will be the first to be sold.

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Ministry of Justice, Justice Secretary Michael Gove

The Justice Secretary said that around 10,000 prison places will move from outdated sites to the new prisons, significantly improving rehabilitation, and saving around £80 million per year due to the reduced costs of modern facilities.

Speaking from his office in the Ministry of Justice, Michael Gove said:

This investment will mean we can replace ageing and ineffective Victorian prisons with new facilities fit for the modern world.

We will be able to design out the dark corners which too often facilitate violence and drug-taking.

And we will be able to build a prison estate which allows prisoners to be rehabilitated, so they turn away from crime.

It is only through better rehabilitation that we will reduce reoffending, cut crime and make our streets safer.

Chancellor George Osborne
Chancellor George Osborne

In a joint statement the Chancellor George Osborne said:

This spending review is about reform as much as it is about making savings.

One important step will be to modernise the prison estate. So many of our jails are relics from Victorian times on prime real estate in our inner cities.

So we are going to reform the infrastructure of our prison system, building new institutions which are modern, suitable and rehabilitative. And we will close old, outdated prisons in city centres, and sell the sites to build thousands of much-needed new homes.

This will save money, reform an outdated public service and create opportunity by boosting construction jobs and offering more people homes to buy.

Five of the new prisons will be open before the end of this parliament. The government will also complete the new prison being built at Wrexham, and expand existing prisons in Stocken and Rye Hill.