Apr 2010 20

There are two stories currently dominating the headlines: The unpredictable general election and the eruption of the Icelandic volcano, which has caused chaos to European airspace.

The timing of events has provided a sharp reminder of just how mobile Britons are. Transport policy, unlike health or education, is rarely centre stage during election campaigns. But, as the Icelandic volcano has shown, air travel – and travel on other modes of transport – are key issues that the next government will need to address.

ePolitix election focus on transport today provides a good summary of the three main parties’ transport policies and priorities.  Media coverage of the main parties transport policies has thus far been dominated by high speed rail and the expansion of Heathrow. But as two- thirds of all British trips are made by car and four fifths of the population lives in a household with a car, the roads are the most important area of transport policy for a substantial proportion of the electorate.

Both Labour and Conservatives plan to introduce electric vehicle charging points on the road network. The Lib Dems are the only party that plans to introduce a system of road-pricing. Labour has ruled out the introduction of national road pricing for next Parliament, while the Conservatives have not ruled out introducing road pricing if it is needed to fund additional road capacity.

None of the parties are really addressing the concerns of ordinary motorists, looking for an affordable and convenient journey to work.  The TPA has also outlined the transport policies we want the next government to introduce in the TPA manifesto.    

  • http://democraticuk.blogspot.com A Democratic U.K.

    Found your site at long last. Good to see you fighting the good fight. Will return again and often

  • http://driversalliance.blogspot.com/2010/04/we-need-to-analyse-libdem-policies.html#links Peter Roberts

    The Conservatives are not talking about road pricing in the classic sense.
    Road pricing is generally understood to be the tracking and charging of vehicles based on the Time, Distance and Place (TDP charging).
    The Conservatives are talking about tolling new road capacity whilst Labour are ruling out road pricing “during the life of the next parliament”. Labour however are funding technical research into road pricing systems so in reality are still wedded to the idea in the long term.
    The Lib/Dems are committed to the full version of road pricing with satellite tracking and charging of every vehicle – even though the cost to do this is astonishing and will never be “revenue neutral” to the end user. Indeed the governments own figures show the annual cost to the individual road user at about £540. Remember; this is on top of the taxes already collected from drivers as it is the operating cost for the collection and enforcement systems.
    Be careful who you vote for because transport policy must be at the forefront of any debate. Transport is often the highest cost to any family budget and transport affects everyone everyday.
    The NHS, Police and education are important but how often do you actually use these services?

  • AdrianS

    Sensible words from Peter Roberts,
    In a nutshell the Lib dems want to tax the living crap out the motorist, and I dont think the other bunch of clowns are too far behind.
    Nobody seems to stand up for the motoring man or women, many fighting to go to work and pay taxes which keep the country going.
    I wouldnt trust Nock Clogg any further than I could throw him.
    By the way most of my motoring time is spent on a eco friendly, fuel effecient scooter before anyone thinks I’m a “two Jags”

  • http://www.fairdealabd.org.uk/londonmts.htm Brian Mooney – Association of British Drivers

    Thanks for raising this vital topic.
    The main parties’ manifestoes are thin on detail – Labour claim to have ruled out national road pricing, but that doesn’t stop them implementing it piecemeal.
    The Tory position is indefensible. For a start new roads should come out of the £40Bn a year surplus they take from drivers. It’s also at odds with their stated position on reversing the rise of the surveillance state.
    Boris Johnson should be ashamed of lending his name to Transport for London proposals for spreading road pricing in London, and a raft of new motoring taxes – these go further than Ken Livingstone did. See http://www.fairdealabd.org.uk.