News story

Transport Minister chairs summit to support hauliers, businesses and people of Kent

Andrew Jones discusses measures to alleviate issues in Kent.

Trucks.

Transport Minister Andrew Jones visited Maidstone in Kent today, 31 July 2015, where he held a meeting with Kent County Council, Kent Police and Highways England to urgently examine measures to alleviate the impact of disruption in Calais on local residents.

The minister announced a series of actions the Department for Transport (DfT) will take, building on the Prime Minister’s announcement following COBR today on coordinated work by government to address the unacceptable disruption in Dover and Coquelles.

In partnership with Kent County Council, Kent Police and Highways England, DfT will:

  • look at how to improve the effectiveness of diversion routes
  • improve communication by providing greater information to the haulage sector including better use of signs
  • urgently review the prioritisation of perishable goods, to maintain these valuable exports

Transport Minister Andrew Jones said:

I am very concerned about the impact being felt by the community in Kent and today I want to reassure all those affected that the government is actively pursuing measures to help. I met members of Kent County Council, Kent Police, Highways England and others today who have been working hard to find short, medium and longer-term solutions to the management of freight to and from the Channel Tunnel.

We all want to see Calais and the Channel Tunnel operating as normal and people on both sides of the Channel able to go about their business without disruption. I am offering the government’s full support to Kent.

The minister’s summit follows a PM-chaired COBR meeting this morning after which a range of new measures were announced.

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Published 31 July 2015