News story

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling visits £500 million projects set to boost the north-west

Transport Minister visits Manchester Airport relief road and Port of Liverpool.

  • Transport Secretary Chris Grayling sees first-hand how communities will benefit from major programme of investment in roads and ports
  • £229 million project will provide Manchester with new A6 relief road, improving links to the airport
  • £300 million investment in Liverpool docks will create 5,000 jobs
  • Cheshire East Council given access to share of £4 million to develop plans to tackle local congestion

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling made his first official visit to the north-west today (5 August 2016), to see how record investment in transport will improve journeys and deliver economic growth across the region.

The investment in the north will help deliver better journeys for people across the region, ensuring they feel the benefit of a growing economy.

The Transport Secretary visited the A6 Manchester Airport relief road, to see how the £229 million project will help unlock jobs in Greater Manchester and East Cheshire by improving access to Manchester Airport.

The airport relief road is set to open October 2017 and will help create up to 5,450 new jobs.

The Manchester Airport relief road will help create up to 5,450 new jobs by linking people to work and opportunities.

During his visit, he also gave the go-ahead for Cheshire East Council to develop its plans for the Middlewich Eastern Bypass. The proposal, if taken forward, would cut congestion in the town centre and open up land for commercial development.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said:

The major investment we are making in transport across the north-west will improve journeys for local people as well as helping industry grow across the region.

This is part of our plan to invest in the north, and make an economy that works for everyone – not just the privileged few – by ensuring economic prosperity is spread throughout the country. Better infrastructure is likely to boost productivity.

The government is working closely with Transport for the North, which represents councils and local enterprise partnerships, and Highways England to deliver a more efficient transport network in the region that supports business and growth.

Andrew Bellamy, managing director of MAN Diesel & Turbo UK, welcomed the construction of the new airport relief road, which government is providing £165 million for. He said:

We use Manchester Airport on a daily basis for the transportation of vital diesel engine spare parts and visiting our clients and sister companies worldwide. Access to the relief road on our doorstep will dramatically reduce the time taken to reach the airport, improving our response time to customers and ease of travel for our employees.

The Transport Secretary also visited the Port of Liverpool to see Peel Ports’ £300 million investment in the new Seaforth container terminal. It will mean the docks can accommodate some of the world’s largest ships, helping provide 5,000 jobs over the next 10 years.

Peel Ports’ Chief Executive Mark Whitworth said:

We very much welcome the minister’s interest, which maintains the government’s support for our efforts to facilitate UK trade through this key cargo gateway.

The timing of the visit is particularly opportune given the recent arrival of the first containers at the port during our marine trials.

With full opening now imminent, we will soon be able to offer companies ship-to-door access to the heart of the UK market via the biggest container ships in the world.

The Secretary of State has today also given the go-ahead to 4 councils to develop plans for major transport schemes making £4 million available to support them. They are:

  • the Middlewich scheme
  • a new river crossing in Great Yarmouth
  • the dualling of a bridge in Worcester
  • a new junction on the M11 to serve Harlow, in Essex

The funding will cover the costs to councils of developing business cases over the next 6 to 9 months. Once this work is completed the Department for Transport will decide which schemes should proceed.

Roads media enquiries