UKIP’s national day of action against the ‘highway robbery’ of road tolls got a warm response from drivers today. Party activists delivered the message by unfurling banners at a series of ‘Stop The Tolls’ demonstrations across the UK.
Shropshire and Staffordshire UKIP members congregated at the Mill Lane Bridge, over the M6 Toll at Cheslyn Hay in the West Midlands.
“The message was warmly received once again,” said UKIP’s Transport spokesman Jill Seymour. “The campaigners received lots of honking horns of support, both from hauliers and car drivers.”
Another protest was held at the Dartford Crossing in London, where toll booths are being removed on November 30 at an estimated cost of up to £68 million.
They are being replaced by a numberplate recognition scheme, which will fine any drivers who have not paid their toll, either by phone or online.
Mrs Seymour said: “Whilst removing toll booths will improve traffic flow and reduce congestion, many drivers will be unwittingly caught out – particularly occasional users and older drivers.
“But that is just part of the problem. Road users contribute some £50 billion a year through a variety of taxes, yet only around £6 billion is re-invested in the transport network.
“Why should we still have tolls at the Dartford crossing at all, when the construction cost of this project was paid off by the motorist more than a decade ago?”
Mrs Seymour added: “Charging to use our busiest motorways or trunk roads is adding insult to injury to the already over-burdened British driver.
“UKIP is opposed to this highway robbery. We want to block the introduction of any new toll roads, and work towards removing existing tolls from publicly owned roads.
“The taxes we already pay as road users should be more than enough to afford the best road network in the world.
“Putting road tolls on top of the fuel tax, excise duty and VAT which we already pay is simply wrong.”
"The government has to realise that motorists are not just a cash-cow to finance other grandiose schemes, like the white elephant HS2 rail project.”