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Liberal Democrats on Kent County Council

Government needs to come clean on Plans for Kent Lorry Parks

July 19, 2020 11:47 AM

Minister admits that Government is planning for significant disruption in Kent at the end of the Brexit transition period

Earlier this week the Government completed the purchase of the so-called "MOJO" customs clearance site and lorry holding area next to Jct. 10a on the M20 near Ashford. The Government's plans first came to light last Friday week. They were previously kept secret from Ashford Borough Council and local residents, although the Cabinet Member has confirmed that Kent CC was aware of the Government's proposals.

The Parliamentary Undersecretary at the Department for Transport, Rachel Maclean MP, has confirmed that the Secretary of State will by-pass the local planning processes through what is known as a "special development order". Work has already started.

Back in 2017 the Government was forced to abandon plans to establish a massive lorry park at Stanford near Jct. 11 on the M20, having failed the carry out a proper environmental assessment.

Apparently, the Government is now looking to establish four more lorry parks in Kent.

Rob at DoverLeader of the Opposition at Kent CC, Rob Bird commented,

"Turning Kent into the Lorry Park of England may be preferable to Dover becoming grid-locked or parts of the M20 being shut down but none of these customs checks need be necessary."

"The Conservatives failed to negotiate seriously with our biggest trading partners and are now plunging us into a reckless No-deal Brexit.

"We are told that British businesses face an additional £13 billion bill next year as a result of the Government's post-Brexit border checks. That's £250 million a week of extra bureaucracy, paperwork and red tape, £250 million a week of dead money.

"Kent will be on the front line next year when the Government terminates free trade with Europe. The Government and Kent CC need to be clear on the steps they are taking now to ensure that Kent residents and communities are spared the worse consequences."