Skip to content

CLEP responds to A66 dualling consultation

Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP) has formally submitted its response to the National Highways consultation on the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine Project (NTP).

The £1 billion project would involve making the entire route between Penrith and Scotch Corner a dual carriageway and deliver significant improvements to the A66 between J40 of the M6 at Penrith and J53 of the A1(M) at Scotch Corner.

An application for a Development Consent Order (DCO), the means of obtaining permission for developments categorised as Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects, is due to be submitted in Spring 2022 with construction work expected to start in 2024-25.

In its response to the consultation carried out by National Highways (formerly known as Highways England), CLEP identified a number of key requirements that the project should address.

CLEP Chief Executive Jo Lappin said: “While there are significant benefits that the A66 NTP project will deliver, there are a number of matters which CLEP believes need to be resolved to secure our full support and to make sure that the project fully contributes to Cumbria’s economic and business recovery and growth.

“The areas that we would most like to see addressed relate to people and skills, business opportunities, enhancing our overall infrastructure and supporting places.

“In Cumbria, we need to increase our labour supply and access to higher level skills. The delivery of the A66 NTP project will support access to and connectivity with other areas on the route, which will help to increase our labour supply in the future.

“The scheme also needs to ensure that there are quantifiable and deliverable measures in place that enable local businesses to maximise and take full advantage of supply chain opportunities which the £1bn investment will generate.

“CLEP recognises the positive contribution that the A66 NTP project will make to improve accessibility in the county. However, there are further improvements that need to be considered to ensure that the construction of the project meets the wider service and infrastructure needs of the county.

“Cumbria has faced significant challenges from major weather events in recent years, most notably several major flooding events, that have had had lasting economic and social impacts and which have caused business disruption.

“Construction of the A66 NTP and its ancillary infrastructure therefore needs to be resilient to meet the challenges of a changing climate.

“Finally, visitor and tourism activity makes a significant contribution to the Cumbrian economy. It is therefore vitally important that the construction of the A66 NTP does not adversely impact on the image of this successful sector.

“CLEP has long supported the need for improvements to the A66 and we are very pleased that proposals to upgrade the route have met with support in the county. We now need to ensure that delivery of the project meets the requirements of Cumbria’s people and economy.”

The full details of the proposed A66 upgrade improvements are available via the Department for Transport website.

Your login details have been used by another user or machine. Login details can only be used once at any one time so you have therefore automatically been logged out. Please contact your sites administrator if you believe this other user or machine has unauthorised access.