Brexit truck stop customs plan dropped for Holyhead

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Image caption,
The site near Holyhead had been earmarked for a new customs facility

Plans to buy an Anglesey truck stop as part of post-Brexit customs checks have been scrapped.

The Roadking site in Holyhead would have been forced to shut under the original proposal, risking nearly 30 jobs.

The Welsh Government said it has identified other potential locations in the town's Parc Cybi area to host the new facility.

Lorries entering and leaving the UK via Holyhead face checks in the new year.

Inland border facilities will be making checks on documentation from 1 January for any lorries entering or leaving UK ports.

From July, physical checks on goods will also commence - including items passing through Holyhead Port.

"As a result of leaving the EU, substantial new infrastructure is required to deliver checks on goods," said a Welsh Government official.

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Image caption,
Holyhead's port sees an estimated 5 million tonnes of freight every year

It has been working with the UK government to identify locations on Anglesey which could deal with the level of freight traffic generated by Holyhead Port, the second busiest 'roll-on, roll-off' ferry in the UK.

As one of the main routes between the UK and Republic of Ireland, the port handles about 1,200 lorries every day with an estimated 5 million tonnes of freight passing through every year.

"We have assessed the options carefully and have determined that other potential sites on Parc Cybi would be a more suitable alternative," said the Welsh Government.

"This would also offer the opportunity for the truck stop to remain open, protecting jobs and providing a service for its customers, should it wish to do so."

Image caption,
Post-Brexit checks on freight documents will begin on 1 January

The island's Conservative MP Virginia Crosbie said: "I am pleased that alternative facilities more suited to the requirements have been identified locally.

"I hope to receive confirmation soon that work will go ahead resulting in the creation of over 120 new jobs in Holyhead."

She said the current Roadking facility could now be in a "unique position to offer an established complimentary service to the other freight and logistics operations".

Anglesey's senedd member, Plaid Cymru's Rhun ap Iworeth, welcomed the decision, but added on social media: "What a shambles again from the UK Govt - still no customs solution.

"A new site should've been ready locally long ago."

From 1 January, lorry drivers heading to and from Holyhead will initially be expected to make use of an inland border facility at Warrington in Cheshire for documentation checks, with a more limited service at Parc Cybi.

Anglesey council said: "We believe that these facilities should be situated as near as possible to the Port of Holyhead in order to maximise economic benefits to the town and wider island."

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