After Peel Ports Group’s announcement of their intention to raise the toll for Warburton Bridge from 12p to £1, I have been contacted by a number of constituents concerned about the proposed hike.

I wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport and I received a response from Charlotte Norbiton, Transport Minister, who told me that, because Warburton Bridge is privately owned by Peel Ports Group, any application to vary the toll must be made to the Secretary of State and no such application has yet been made.

Unfortunately, the Minister did not assure me that any such application to increase the toll would be rejected.

I believe that it is simply unacceptable to pass the £6.5 million bill of the much needed works to repair Warburton Bridge and help ease traffic congestion onto local residents when the Manchester Ship Canal Company have collected the toll for the last 131 years and profit from it by an estimated £460,000 per annum.

I can assure you that I will continue to oppose the proposed hike in the cost of the toll for Warburton Bridge, which is unacceptable.

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