As a consultation into the proposed new link between Tilbury and Kent opens – Thurrock Council’s described the plans as “abysmal”.
Highways England wants to connect the M25 at Ockendon to Rochester via the A13 and Tilbury Riverside – but this is still unanimously opposed by the authority.
Council Leader Rob Gledhill says while they wanted a scheme that would develop the economy locally and connect communities – what’s suggested so far will just smash greenbelt and effectively cut the borough in half.
He said: “All Councillors remain unanimously opposed to the Lower Thames Crossing, as I have made abundantly clear on many occasions, and that position has not changed.
“Contrary to Highways England’s claims that the scheme will enable sustainable local development and strengthen and connect local communities, it will in fact just smash through greenbelt land, damage development opportunities and effectively cut the borough in half.
“There is a clear absence of any real connectivity improvements here, only the threat of a motorway and absolutely nothing that will benefit our residents as has been intimated by Highways England. In fact, this proposal will have a completely unacceptable impact on Thurrock.
“Now we know the full extent of Highways England’s plans we will go to any lengths in fighting these abysmal proposals, and I will be calling on all councillors, irrespective of party, to back my motion at full council later this month to go to court for a Judicial Review.”
The council says it’s agreed more than 50 measures which Highways England must deliver before they even consider backing the plans.
They’re now encouraging local residents to review and respond to the consultation material at www.lowerthamescrossing.co.uk/haveyoursay.