[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 March 2006, 17:46 GMT
In quotes: Bridge tolls shake-up
Transport Minister Tavish Scott has announced tolls are being scrapped on the Erskine Bridge but will remain on the Tay and Forth bridges. Here is reaction to the shake-up.

GLASGOW CITY COUNCIL LEADER STEVEN PURCELL

We have been pushing for the tolls to be scrapped for a considerable period of time and I'm delighted that the Scottish Executive has heeded those calls.

This news will help to strengthen the economy of the metropolitan Glasgow area. If we are to increase jobs and decrease traffic congestion then we must improve our infrastructure even further with the completion of the M74 extension and the East End Regeneration Route.

FIFE COUNCIL LEADER ANNE McGOVERN
Removing the tolls on the Erskine Bridge but retaining them on the Forth and Tay is wholly unfair and inequitable for Fifers.

Ministers have listened to us and rejected the 4 charge Feta was seeking to introduce, but the situation remains that the two bridges in the east of Scotland continue to be tolled with the subsequent impact this will have on the Fife and whole east of Scotland economy.

Because of this we now have to go one step further and fight the discrimination that even limited tolls on the Forth and Tay will bring in the face of all other tolls being scrapped.

DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL LEADER JILL SHIMI

It is deeply unfair for both Dundee and Fife that a two-tier system of bridge tolling or not operates across Scotland. This inequality cannot be of any benefit to areas like Fife and Dundee who have been left with charges, while other parts of the country have seen these abolished.

This is also a very illogical situation and one that has the potential to damage local economies.

FRIENDS OF THE EARTH SCOTLAND'S CHIEF EXECUTIVE DUNCAN McLAREN

Retaining a charge to cross the Forth Road Bridge is a reasonable decision, because charging to use road space has proven economic and environmental benefits.

However, once again we are bitterly disappointed that ministers have failed to back sensible measures aimed at tackling rising road traffic levels.

The executive is also wrong to take forward plans for a second Forth Road Bridge, without first completing vital technical studies. The case for spending up to 1bn on a second Forth Road Bridge has yet to be properly made, let alone proven.

This distraction risks diverting efforts from reducing traffic levels, improving public transport and obtaining the facts about the scope for repairing the current bridge.

JOHN McGOLDRICK, NATIONAL ALLIANCE AGAINST TOLLS SCOTLAND

Three cheers that the Erskine tolls will at last stop, but we are very disappointed that the Forth and Tay tolls are to stay, particularly as the Forth tolls were due to end on 31 March.

This is a betrayal of the people of Fife, who will to continue to suffer the cost, inconvenience and economic blight of tolls. The promises of no toll increases and new bridges will soon be forgotten.

We urge people all over Scotland to register their disapproval by signing the petition against the tolls on the Scottish Parliament website.

RENFREWSHIRE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE PRESIDENT JIM HARROLD
Mission accomplished! Our objective was a toll-free bridge for 2006, and I'm delighted that the minister has acted decisively after hearing our robust representations on behalf of the Renfrewshire business community.

This will be a huge boost for Renfrewshire tourism and business. I think what helped swing it was a survey of our members in January which showed that 99% of respondents were in favour of the tolls being withdrawn. The Scottish Executive simply could not ignore that depth of feeling.

We were at the forefront of the campaign and we are delighted with this fantastic outcome.



SEE ALSO:
Bridge tolls shake-up announced
01 Mar 06 |  Scotland


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific