Councils agree liability over Humber Bridge debt

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THE four Humber councils have agreed to share an equal liability for the Humber Bridge debt, paving the way for tolls to be halved.

A Government offer to write off £150m of the debt, enabling a single crossing to cost just £1.50, depended on the four councils agreeing to underwrite a share of the remaining debt.

North East Lincolnshire Council had been reluctant to sign up, but said yesterday it had agreed a deal with Hull, East Riding and North Lincolnshire councils, which also includes a proposal from its leader Chris Shaw to introduce free crossings for hospital patients.

Coun Shaw said: “I am delighted that my persistence has paid off in wanting to ensure the interests of residents in North East Lincolnshire are properly protected. I am now satisfied with the assurances I have been given that the likelihood of ever having to fund any shortfall is limited.”