Better roads to keep Kent moving

My aims

  • Tackle traffic at Brenley Corner    
  • Stop the closure of the M20 under Operation Stack
  • Upgrade Kent's roads with investment from central Government

 

Background

Traffic isn't just annoying, it's holding Kent back. Our economy can't grow unless our infrastructure is up-to-scratch. 

The Government is investing £15.2 billion in roads over the next five years, and I want to make sure Kent gets its fair share. In particular I want to see improvements to the roundabout Brenley Corner, which has been left almost completely unchanged since it was built more than 50 years ago.

With 1000s of new houses planned for our area, pressure on the road network is only going to increase. It's vital that infrastructure keeps pace with development. Given that the vast majority of UK freight passes through Kent, this is a national problem not just a local one.

That was powerfully demonstrated in summer of 2015, when Kent ground to a halt as a result of Operation Stack. For 32 days 5,000 Lorries were parked on the M20 because of disruption in Calais. This caused chaos and misery for my constituents.

Journeys that usually took 5 or 10 minutes took hours, people couldn’t get to work or to important appointments, operations were delayed because hospital staff couldn’t get to work, teachers struggled to get to school and businesses couldn’t transport their goods. One ten-year-old girl had to wait an hour and a half for an ambulance after falling off a climbing frame.

Operation Stack is used by the police to manage freight traffic when there are delays crossing the channel. It involves closing the M20 between Junctions 8 and 9, sometimes for several days, and queuing thousands of lorries.

This problem is only going to get worse as the economy grows and freight traffic increases. So Operation Stack is not sustainable; we need a long-term solution.

That means finding off-road areas for lorries to park and improving Kent’s road infrastructure so it’s better able to cope with disruptions. This includes upgrading the M20, M2 and A2.

I’m making sure this stays at the top of the Government’s agenda. My number one priority is keeping Kent moving.

News

Major improvements could be coming to Brenley Corner

A major improvement scheme at Brenley Corner IS being seriously considered.

Highways bosses are "pressing for a major scheme to provide an improved grade separated junction in order to deliver a major change at Brenley Corner," Roads Minister Andrew Jones assured me in a recent letter.

"Minister, keep Kent's roads clean"

Following on from my recent survey of thousands of local residents, I have called on Highways England and the Department for Transport to tidy up Kent’s roads. 

I press the Minister on Brenley Corner

Yesterday I questioned the Transport Secretary on the Government’s plans to invest in Brenley Corner to ease congestion and reduce accidents.

Children could miss school due to bus changes

Children from growing villages like Headcorn, Sutton Valence, Langley, should have at least two direct buses to school each morning so that they can have a good start to the day and don’t miss out on lessons or breakfast clubs.

We need investment to beat traffic around Maidstone

Terrible traffic is making life a misery in Maidstone and surrounding villages like Langley, Bearsted and Downswood. Too many people tell me how the daily grind of sitting in long queues, being late for work and delayed getting home is becoming unbearable.

Chancellor, please tackle traffic at Brenley Corner

Brenley corner is not fit for purpose. The terrible traffic is not just annoying – making people late for work and children late for school, delaying deliveries and even holding up ambulances – it’s holding Kent back.

Lorry park to be built at Stanford West

Stanford West has been chosen as the site for the new Operation Stack lorry park, the Secretary of State for Transport announced today. It’s great to see that the Government is getting on with the job and building a long-term solution to Operation Stack