WITH Britain less than four months away from its final split with the European Union, U.K. Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick gave himself sweeping powers to build truck parks across large parts of England to avoid chaotic queues at ports.
The government will be able to start construction in 29 different council areas without the approval of local officials, according to a statutory instrument laid before Parliament on Thursday. The areas included Essex and so technically could be in or near Harlow.
The government has already started constructing holding facilities for lorries in Kent, which will be used to park goods vehicles which don’t have the correct paperwork to enter the EU. The holding pens are a key part of Britain’s plans to avoid border delays from Jan. 1, when full customs controls will be imposed on goods traveling from the U.K. whether or not it reaches a trade deal with the bloc.
“This Order grants temporary planning permission for development consisting of the use of land for the stationing and processing of vehicles (particularly goods vehicles) entering or leaving Great Britain,” according to an explanatory note accompanying the instrument.
[…] The government has granted itself emergency planning permission to build ‘temporary’ lorry parks to avoid congestion at ports resulting from extra checks that will be required if, as expected, the UK and the EU can’t agree a trading deal: Boris Johnson’s government is preparing to build dozens of Brexit lorry parks in anticipation of border chaos. Unsurprisingly, given Thurrock’s role as a major port plus it’s location on the route down to Dover, the borough has been selected as one of the locations for a lorry park: Government use powers to build Brexit lorry parks (with one ear-marked for Thurrock). […]