Holidaymakers driving around Britain this summer have been warned of the significant fees they could face to use some of the country’s toll roads and bridges.
Motoring experts from LeaseVan.co.uk have revealed 20 roads in the UK where vehicle owners must pay for their passage or face a potentially long and time-consuming diversion.
Some require drivers to have small change available to pay cash in hand, whilst others uses smart registration tracking technology and digital payment systems.
Most toll roads and bridges are located to save motorists time by providing a convenient river crossing or offering an alternative route.
The purpose of pricing road use varies, from tolls designed to ease congestion in busy areas to funding road, tunnel or bridge maintenance.
Other British road charging schemes include the official congestion zone and the ultra-low emission zone in London, and the Durham road user charge zone.
Fees for using the Severn bridges on the M4 and M48 in to and out of Wales were scrapped by the government last year.
There are currently no toll roads or toll bridges in Scotland or Northern Ireland either – all of the UK’s are found in England.
Tim Alcock of LeaseVan.co.uk said: “Many drivers begrudge paying a fee to use toll roads in Europe, but there are many important examples in Britain too.
“Whether behind the wheel for business or pleasure, all drivers in the UK need to know where the country’s tollgates are located and how much it costs to pass through.
“Unprepared motorists could otherwise be forced to make an embarrassing U-turn and follow a long diversion.
“Our researchers have put together a list of twenty British toll roads and bridges to help drivers plan their journeys.”
Here is the LeaseVan.co.uk list:
1. Dartford Crossing
The Thames crossing at Dartford on London’s outer ring-road, between Kent and Essex, costs £2.50 for cars and £3.00 for vans per journey (between 6am and 10pm, every day), with discounts available for registered users and local residents.
2. M6 Toll
Birmingham’s 27 mile northern relief road, the M6 Toll, connects Junction 3A of the regular M6 at Coleshill with Junction 11A at Wolverhampton. Prices vary depending on when you’re travelling, your vehicle and how much of the road you use, but are displayed on digital signs before joining the road and online. It’s generally between £4 to £7 for a car and £9 to £12 for a van.
3. Batheaston Bridge
Motorists wishing to use the 19th century Batheaston Toll Bridge over the River Avon near Bath must pay 80p if they’re travelling in a car or £1.50 if they’re driving a van, though monthly passes are available for frequent users.
4. Clifton Suspension Bridge
Based on Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s original design, the famous Grade I listed Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol has been a toll bridge for maintenance purposes since it opened in 1864. Today, drivers using the impressive feat of Victorian engineering must pay £1.
5. Humber Bridge
Also Grade I listed, the Humber Bridge on the A15 near Hull was the largest suspension bridge in the world until the late 1990s. It costs £1.50 for a single journey across in a car or small commercial vehicle and £4.00 for heavier vehicles to use.
6. Tyne Tunnels
Between Newcastle and South Shields, the tunnels under the River Tyne charge car and van owners £1.80.
7. Tamar Bridge
£1.50 cash is required for cars and small vans to drive over the Tamar crossing on the outskirts of Plymouth, with prices rising for heavier vehicles.
8. Mersey Tunnels
Drivers using the Queensway or Kingsway tunnels under the River Mersey in Liverpool must pay at least £1.80.
9. Dunham Bridge
Using the Dunham Toll Bridge over the River Trent in Lincolnshire costs car drivers 40p and van drivers 60p per journey.
10. Mersey Gateway
It costs around £2 for cars and vans to use the Mersey Gateway Bridges in Cheshire, though discounts and monthly passes are available.
11. Itchen Bridge
Prices vary on the Itchen Bridge in Southampton, but it costs around 80p or £1.40 for cars and vans to use respectively.
12. Whitchurch Bridge
Whitchurch Bridge, which crosses the River Thames near Reading, costs 60p cash for vehicles under 3.5 tonnes and £4 for those over 3.5 tonnes.
13. Whitney Bridge
Vehicle owners need to pay £1 for midnight to midnight use of the Whitney-on-Wye Bridge in Herefordshire, where speed is also limited to 5mph.
14. Swinford Bridge
The Grade II listed Swinford Toll Bridge near Eynsham in Oxfordshire provides the private owner with a tax-free income since the 18th century – today it costs 5p per car and 50p per lorry to make the crossing.
15. Cartford Bridge
The Cartford Toll Bridge charges cars between 50p to 70p, depending on weight, and vans 70p to drive over the River Wyre in northern Lancashire.
16. Warbuton Bridge
Commissioned to cross the Manchester Ship Canal in the 1860s, the Warburton Bridge charges all passing vehicles a toll of 12p cash.
17. Aldwark Bridge
All drivers are required to pay 40p each time they wish to use the Aldwark Toll Bridge in North Yorkshire.
18. Kingsland Bridge
Kingsland Bridge in Shrewsbury is another privately-owned, Victorian-era toll – the price of crossing is 20p.
19. Cowes Floating Bridge
The Cowes Floating Bridge is the only vehicular crossing of the River Medina north of Newport on the Isle of Wight. It costs £2.60 for cars and £3.30 for vans.
20. College Road, Dulwich
In South London, a private section of College Road charges all motor vehicles £1.20 to pass through the tollgate during morning rush hour (07:00 to 09:30) and at weekends.