Osborne predicts boost from Humber Bridge lower tolls

Humber Bridge Chancellor George Osborne predicts that reduced tolls on the Humber Bridge will boost the region's economy

The Chancellor believes the Yorkshire and Humber economy will receive a £250 million boost from an increased number of motorists using the Humber Bridge.

Toll charges have been reduced from £3 to £1.50 each way for cars.

Motorcycle tolls have now been scrapped.

The lower tolls come as a result of the government writing down almost half the £330 million debt still outstanding on the Humber Bridge.

Toll impact

In an interview with BBC Look North, George Osborne said: "The evidence we have is that the cut in the tolls will boost the local economy by £250 million over the next generation.

"It is really good for jobs, people will be able to find work on the other side of the estuary if they haven't got it now."

Chancellor George Osborne predicts that reduced tolls on the Humber Bridge will boost the economy of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.

In a poll commissioned by BBC Look North and carried out by GfK/NOP - 500 people were asked what impact the lower toll charges would have on the economy of East Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire:

  • 95% believed lower toll charges would have a positive effect on the local community;
  • 55% of regular bridge users said they would use the bridge more frequently;
  • 53% believed that commuters would benefit most from lower tolls, compared with 17% who thought that leisure users would benefit most.
Economic benefits?

Start Quote

George Osborne

The evidence we have is that the cut in tolls will boost the local economy by £250 million”

End Quote George Osborne (Cons)

Humber Bridge users watched with envy as bridge tolls in Scotland were abolished four years ago.

However, opinion is divided over the economic benefits of lower tolls.

Professor Tom Rye from the Transport Research Institute at Edinburgh Napier University said: "I think the tolls will have a marginal impact.

"If you want to improve the economy of the area you have to look at the things that are the real constraints on the economy of that area, and they are unlikely to be bridge tolls."

It seems that most drivers welcome a cut in tolls after three decades of paying a high price for crossing the Humber.

Tim Iredale Article written by Tim Iredale Tim Iredale Political editor, Yorkshire & Lincolnshire

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  • rate this

    Comment number 5.

    So, there is no charge for motorcycles? Why not? They are a motor vehicle and use the roads just like the rest of us. 50p does not seem an unreasonable amount. I was never one of those who objected to the tolls as they were. After all, compared with the cost of driving all the way round and the amount of time it would take, the bridge was the best option but we should all bear the cost.

  • rate this

    Comment number 4.

    And now for the Dartford Crossing - PLEASE. More money is wasted on petrol and diesel for cars queuing for the tunnels and bridge then I care to think of. The boost to the economy will offset any cost to buy out the current tolls.

  • rate this

    Comment number 3.

    What interests me is that it shows that Tolls are a mistake.
    Skye road bridge: toll abolished
    Forth road bridge: toll abolished
    Tay road bridge: toll abolished
    Humber road bridge: toll reduced
    How long will we have to wait for the toll on "toll roads" to be found unjustifiable, uneconomical and not in the interest of the local economy?
    George Osborne please note!

  • rate this

    Comment number 2.

    Mr Osborne says the local economy will receive £250m boost because the gov is writing down half of £330 debt (say £160m).

    Now that's a pretty good return but those finding work on the other side will still have to pay £780 each year.

    So why not wipe out the debt completely, boost the local economy by £500m and increase local goods spending by an extra £780 per annum from each motorist?

  • rate this

    Comment number 1.

    Of course it is easy to reduce the toll charges when the increasing amount of tax on fuel pays for it



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