Prices up at Dartford Crossing

Charges for the Dartford to Thurrock River Crossing are set to change from Sunday 7 October.

County Council Environment spokesman 'disappointed' at Dartford toll rises

The Kent County Council Cabinet Member for Environment has issued a statement about plans to raise toll prices for the Dratford crossing.

Bryan Sweetland said: “Congestion at the Dartford Crossing and its approaches costs the UK economy some £40million every year and is now a serious hindrance to encouraging economic growth in North Kent.”

"I am concerned that toll charges at the Dartford Crossing are being increased without any improvement to the congestion problems. I am even more concerned that the introduction of ‘free-flow tolling’ has been delayed yet again and is not now planned until the autumn of 2014, when the original date given was late 2012. I would urge the DfT to do all they can to improve on the autumn 2014 date.

“The Government has made a firm commitment to look at the longer term capacity of the crossing and I welcome that.

"Their own statistics show that the crossing was at over capacity for more than two thirds of the year.

"The benefits of an additional Thames crossing would not only help alleviate the severe congestion currently faced by road users, it would also act as a catalyst to unlock much needed investment opportunities in the Thames Gateway region and help boost business and employment prospects in Dartford, Swanley and Gravesend.

“However, to put this into perspective, as things stand at the moment, my granddaughter who starts nursery school this week, is likely to be starting university before any additional crossing is built.

"Overall, local residents, businesses and road users will share my disappointment over this announcement and I call on the new Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin to address these very significant concerns as soon as possible."

– Bryan Sweetland, Kent County Council Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Waste

Dartford charges to 'prioritise investment'

Dartford Crossing Credit: PA

New charges for the Dartford to Thurrock river crossing are now set to be introduced from Sunday, October 7, it's been confirmed.

From that date cash payments at the tunnel and bridge will increase from £1.50 to £2.00 for cars, and from £3.70 to £5.00 for heavy goods vehicles.

Any vehicle using the crossing between 10pm and 6am can continue to do so for free.

Roads Minister Mike Penning said: “The Dartford to Thurrock crossing is a vital piece of transport infrastructure, but upgrades need to be made. To do that, we need to start planning now for the future.

“That’s why we are introducing free-flow charging by the autumn 2014 and currently analysing the options for a new crossing in the Lower Thames area.

“We have listened carefully to what people have said, which is why charges that were meant to be implemented towards the end of last year have been delayed until now. The money raised will help us prioritise investment for much needed improvements to increase capacity and reduce journey times.”

The increase is the first of two planned changes previously announced in May 2012. A second rise will be made when free-flow charging is introduced, when the cost to travel by car will increase to £2.50, by 2 axle vehicles to £3 and by heavy goods vehicles to £6.

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BREAKING NEWS: New charges for Dartford Crossing

New charges for the Dartford to Thurrock river crossing are now set to be introduced from Sunday, October 7, it's been announced.

From 6am on that date cash payments at the tunnel and bridge will increase from £1.50 to £2.00 for cars, from £2.00 to £2.50 for 2 axle goods vehicles, and from £3.70 to £5.00 for heavy goods vehicles.

Any vehicle using the crossing between 10pm and 6am can continue to do so for free.