Clifton Suspension Bridge toll to rise to £1

Clifton Suspension Bridge by night
Image caption The toll for motor vehicles has been 50p since January 2007

The toll for crossing Bristol's Clifton Suspension Bridge and paying with cash is to double from 50p to £1.

The proposal will go to the Department for Transport for approval and, if this is given, then the increase will come into force later this year.

A spokesman for the bridge trustees said regular users could still make savings with a prepaid crossing card.

But a spokesman for the National Alliance Against Tolls argued the increase was not needed.

"I would urge any bridge user who thinks they are going to be affected by the toll increase to make their feelings known to the Department for Transport.

'Bridge illuminations'

"If people don't object the rise will just go through unchallenged.

"And we feel the toll money shouldn't be spent on bridge illuminations or visitor centres which have nothing to do with the cost of crossing," he added.

The bridge is run as a charitable trust and receives no money from government, local authorities or the lottery.

The trustees of Brunel's iconic bridge say £8m needs to be spent on vital repair and maintenance work over the next 10 years in addition to the £1m cost of running the bridge each year.

The bridge is used as a popular short cut between Leigh Woods and Clifton.

In recent years the number of users has fallen by 20% and it is believed this is due to increased use of public transport, park-and-ride services and people cycling more.

The toll for motor vehicles has been 50p since January 2007.

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