Flawed thinking has led to the decision to spend two billion pounds on the Stonehenge tunnel because the Government focuses on National Highways’ road construction programme rather than on building a sustainable multi-modal transport system fit for the 21st century. 

This is not due to any lack of expert advice: numerous Government appointed bodies have stated the importance of investing in more sustainable means of transport such as railways or buses.  

Government policy has also directed that we should be using our cars less, and encourages active travel (walking, wheeling and cycling) for short journeys. 

The Government has been advised repeatedly that the Stonehenge tunnel was a flawed project.  
Five planning inspectors spent six months examining the details in 2019 and unanimously recommended that consent should not be given for the project.   

A National Audit office report in 2019 made clear that the scheme was poor value for money.  National Highways seem reluctant to release the latest cost benefit figures but they are understood to be some way below those which led to the cancellation of HS2.  

The Government’s Climate Change Committee have called for a transport policy which reduces vehicle traffic, and the Parliamentary Transport Select Committee requested in their October 2023 report that transport policy be considered more holistically and take more account of net-zero targets, rather than focusing on building roads.  

This Government has never had the vision to properly evaluate transport alternatives and seems intent on ignoring expert advice and squandering £2 billion on this controversial project. 

Margaret Willmot

Hadrians Close, Salisbury

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