'You're not making money if your truck isn't moving' - Third crossing funding is welcomed by business bosses
Courtesy of Norfolk County Council
Businesses have been lining up to welcome the announcement that Great Yarmouth's third river crossing has been given the green light.
The chancellor pledged £98m for the new bridge in the small print of his Budget on Wednesday.
The remaining funds for the £120m bridge will be underwritten by Norfolk County Council and could be open by 2022 – adding £150m a year to the region’s economy.
Haulage company Spandler GY is based in the South Denes area of Great Yarmouth.
Its transport manager Mick Simmons, said the bridge would be a massive benefit to the firm as the new bridge which will connect the port area to the A47.
He added: “There’s a massive bottle neck getting out of town. You’re not making money if your truck isn’t moving.
“We have deadlines to keep but traffic holds you up so much – even on a good day it’s not good.”
Mr Simmons said this amounted to a loss of two or three loads a week per lorry, which hits the firm’s bottom line.
The new bridge is a boost for the region’s growing renewable sector which already plays host to nearly 70pc of the total offshore wind capacity in British waters.
By 2020 the sector will supply a fifth of the UK’s yearly electricity.
The New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership runs the Great Yarmouth Energy Park based near the planned location of bridge.
Its head of Enterprise Zones and innovation, Julian Munson, praised the decision, adding: “The chancellor’s announcement of funding for the third river crossing is the latest piece in the jigsaw, providing a boost to infrastructure which can only help attract more business to our all-energy coast.
“It’s already home to more than 40 companies, has delivered 2,000 jobs and attracted £38m in private sector investment. This is an optimistic time for the area, with the opening of the Dudgeon wind farm, investment and expansion at Great Yarmouth Port.”
The chief executive of the 3sun Group, a company working with the offshore sector in Great Yarmouth, said the crossing helps support the growing port.
Graham Hacon added: “It’s a vital investment which further enables the use of the Outer Harbour which is essential to the economy of the town and key to enabling growth in the renewables industry.”