Light at the end of the tunnel for A1 campaigners

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THE end could finally be in sight for the fight to dual the A1 through Northumberland.

Reports in national media that the Treasury will approve dualling the remaining 40 miles of the A1 north of Newcastle to the Scottish border have been welcomed by campaigners.

In early 2011, the Government agreed to reclassify the stretch of road into the national roads network and since then calls for funding to be released for the works have been renewed by politicians, residents and businesses.

Although the Department for Transport has said that decisions about future major schemes will be taken after the Spending Review in June, the reports suggest that the £500million scheme will be one of the beneficiaries of an extra allocation of £3billion for roads infrastructure projects.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Campaign Director for the Dual the A1 Campaign, said: “I am pleased that ministers are now seriously looking at allocating funds towards dualling the A1 through Northumberland. The reports are extremely positive, but the Dual the A1 campaign will go on until the upgrade is complete.

“This stretch of the A1 had long suffered from a lack of a political campaign effort for decades, which is why I set up the campaign in 2007.

“Safety reviews and data analysis shows us that the road is unsafe due to its single/dual nature. Indeed most accidents are not due to weather or alcohol, but unfamiliarity with the difficult road layout.

“We believe that investing in the dualling of the last 40 miles of single carriageway on the A1 would give the North East of England and Scotland an economic boost to draw inward investment to the regions.”