Transport Secretary Chris Grayling visited South Gloucestershire today and gave his backing to Thornbury and Yate MP Luke Hall and West of England Mayor candidate Tim Bowles in their bid to improve the local transport network.
Mr Grayling met Mr Hall and Mr Bowles at the site of the South Yate Link Road, an unfinished stretch of dual carriageway not open to vehicles which was started and partially completed in the 1970s.
Mr Hall is pushing for the completion of the route, known as the ‘Road to Nowhere’, as part of his ‘Get South Gloucestershire Moving!’ campaign.
His plans have won the backing of Mr Bowles, South Gloucestershire Council’s Conservative leadership team and 90% of respondents to a survey in Yate.
After the government’s recent award of £52.8million to the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), it is hoped funding will be confirmed for a feasibility study into the completion of the road.
Mr Hall said: “I am delighted that there is real momentum for my campaign to Get Yate Moving, demonstrated by the Transport Secretary’s visit to the proposed South Yate Link Road today.
“Working alongside Tim as Mayor and as part of a strong team of MPs, councillors and council leaders, we can really drive forward and deliver on the transport projects, infrastructure and networks our town needs, such as completing Yate’s link road.
“Tim is the candidate best placed to join me in talking directly to the government of today, pressing for more investment in South Gloucestershire and ensuring we are not left behind as we have been in previous decades.”
Mr Bowles, who has also met the Prime Minister, Chancellor, Home Secretary and Communities Secretary in recent weeks to discuss his plans, said: “Improving the local transport network is one of my top priorities.
“Having the right transport infrastructure is vital for the local economy and if elected I will continue to work closely with the strong team of Conservatives locally, the government, councils and others to push forward schemes like the South Yate Link Road.”
Mr Grayling said: “Luke has campaigned long and hard to improve transport links in South Gloucestershire.
“Today I’ve also been impressed by Tim’s vision to upgrade transport infrastructure across the West of England.
“Tim is the strong voice for the West of England. As Mayor he would play a key role in improving the local transport network for the benefit of everyone, in line with our Plan for Britain.”