Strategic Road Network: South West

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:12 am on 19th July 2017.

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Photo of Jesse Norman Jesse Norman Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport) 11:12 am, 19th July 2017

I very much take my hon. Friend’s point. Of course, the point of the tunnel is not merely to safeguard the extraordinary and historic global asset we have at Stonehenge; it is also part of a much bigger programme of trying to improve the A303 for trunk purposes, in a way that is designed precisely to lift some of the pressure off other arterial routes. I take his point very well.

I should say that I do not recognise the description that has been given of Highways England. From my limited experience as a Minister, I know that it is not a perfect institution, but it has made significant progress since becoming Highways England. It is undoubtedly focused on the task of the effective delivery of schemes in order to get the best outcome for local people, which my hon. Friend mentioned.