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Extra £20m for Kent to prepare ports & roads for Brexit

Kent major ports are expected to be extremely busy after Brexit Photo:

As preparations for Brexit are being stepped up across Kent, the Government has announced 20 million pounds of additional funding for Operation Brock in the county.

Operation Brock provides large emergency lorry parks to be used if the flow of freight through the Port Dover is seriously disrupted.

The funding has been welcomed by hauliers. But business leaders in East Kent say Dover is 'ready', and major disruption is unlikely.

In the past there have been long queues on motorways or lorries have been parked up along the carriageway

"Whether you are going to work, school, heading on holiday or transporting vital goods in or out of the country, we are determined to minimise the impact of any disruption to journeys and keep everyone moving.

"This £20m boost will help ensure the transport network is fully ready to leave the EU on October 31, whatever the circumstances."

– Grant Shapps MP, Transport Secretary

The Department for Transport has said that Kent County Council will also receive extra funds to carry out essential maintenance at Manston Airport. The money will also enable the local authority to implement changes to the traffic management system around Manston and Cheriton, to help with the turnaround of Heavy Goods Vehicles.

There have been trial runs of using Manston's runway as an emergency lorry park

"It's clear that Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps and his team have grasped the importance of a contingency plan to tackle congestion in Kent, post-Brexit,

"The plans for Manston Airport and the implementation of border readiness checks to ensure drivers comply with Operation Brock are of course encouraging. However, we are still in the dark as regards clarity over the actual border crossing requirements.

"Government appears to be trying to bring some discipline to what has been up to now a chaotic and confusing system in the event of a 'no-deal'. Hauliers and the logistics industry as a whole need to be fully prepared for unfamiliar customs and borders paperwork. It's absolutely vital to the UK economy, and in particular the people of Kent that lorries continue to flow freely both into and out of the UK after 31 October."

– Richard Burnett, Chief Executive, Road Haulage Association

Watch our report below by John Ryall