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Mayor's transport hopes for Whitehall visit

Middlesbrough Mayor Dave Budd is hoping talks with a Government Minister will help to deliver solutions – and much needed funding - to ease traffic congestion in the town.

He will outline the Council’s detailed plans to alleviate traffic issues across Middlesbrough, and push for Government support and a commitment to funding.

The Mayor will be travelling to Westminster on Monday (January 15) to meet Under Secretary of State for Roads, Local Transport and Devolution Jesse Norman.

He will be joined by the Council’s Director of Growth and Place Kevin Parkes and Principal Transport Planning Officer Rob Farnham.

The delegation – arranged by Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland MP Simon Clarke – will look in particular at the ‘Marton crawl’ to the south of the town.

The issue featured in a parliamentary debate last month when Mr Norman said saying he would be ‘delighted’ to discuss the Council’s proposals.

He told the debate: “Tees Valley has a major part to play in rebuilding the economy.

“There will be £5bn for local schemes through the Local Growth Fund - which isn’t ring-fenced so it’s up to local authorities to decide how to spend it.”

Just days later Transport Secretary Chris Grayling visited Marton Road to discuss the issues with local politicians and experience the busy route first hand.

Middlesbrough Mayor Dave Budd said: “The Secretary of State has seen for himself the issues we have been contending with for many years, so we are hopeful next week’s meeting will pave the way for real progress.

“We have drawn up detailed and workable plans to make major improvements to our transport network – we now need Government to back us up with the funding we need to deliver them.”