Transport minister pledges commitment to Lowestoft’s third crossing

The secretary of state for transport Chris Grayling (second left) with (left) Suffolk county council

The secretary of state for transport Chris Grayling (second left) with (left) Suffolk county councillor Guy McGregor, Waveney MP Peter Aldous and Waveney District Council leader Colin Law (far right). Mr Grayling visited Lowestoft to hear about the progress on the town's third crossing project. - Credit: Archant

Transport secretary Chris Grayling reaffirmed the government's commitment to Lowestoft's third crossing project when he visited the town today (Friday, March 17).

Mr Grayling, who was in town to hear of the progress made on the long awaited bridge, said the project still had to get through the planning process. But he gave assurances that the government was serious about seeing the scheme through to completion.

He said: 'We wouldn't be here today if there wasn't the intention of everyone involved to find a solution to the problem.'

The secretary of state for transport met with Waveney MP Peter Aldous and representatives from Suffolk county and Waveney district council at Waveney's Riverside office.

He praised Mr Aldous for making a very powerful case to the government for the new crossing and said: 'Having looked at the issue today, and looked at the limitations of the crossing over the water here in Lowestoft, I absolutely now understand nice and clearly the case Peter and the council have been making. There is clearly a transport issue that needs to be solved which is why this work has been done.'

He said improving the transport infrastructure would unlock the economic potential of the area and create the opportunity for more jobs.

Mr Grayling's visit comes a year after the then chancellor George Osborne awarded Suffolk County Council £73.4m to construct the third crossing.

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He was advised that Suffolk County Council has established a full project team to deliver the crossing and ground investigations were due to start by June, with the first round of consultations being held around the same time.

Mr Aldous said: 'Today's visit shows the government's continued commitment under the new prime minister. This is a very exciting time for the town'

Colin Law, Waveney leader, said: 'A huge amount of preparatory work must go in to the scheme before construction gets underway and Mr Grayling will see that the project team is making excellent progress.'

Guy McGregor, county councillor with special responsibility for projects, said: 'This is a much needed scheme which we are determined will be delivered on time and on budget.'

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