Halton residents who registered before the bridge opened urged to sign up for another year of discounted travel
A new campaign is launching this week to make sure eligible Halton residents sign up with merseyflow for another year of discounted travel across the Mersey Gateway Bridge.
Over 99% of Halton residents benefit from a scheme set up by Halton Borough Council where they can pay just £10 for a year and then make as many personal journeys across the river as they like for no further cost.
It is an annual scheme so around 33,000 local residents who registered ahead of the bridge opening last autumn are being asked to re-apply at www.merseyflow.co.uk for the next 12 months.
The scheme is only open to Class 2 vehicles, that is small cars and vans.
Tolling operator merseyflow is introducing a phased renewal campaign to help make the online re-registration process as simple as possible.
The merseyflow team is sending people who registered with them before October last year an email or a letter explaining what to do and encouraging them to renew in plenty of time to ensure they continue to get discounted travel.
Any Halton resident who registered before the bridge opened on 14th October can renew online at www.merseyflow.co.uk now following merseyflow’s simple five-step guide.
Merseyflow’s five-step renewal guide for eligible Halton residents is:
- Step 1 – scan or take photographs of your valid driving licence, current council tax bill and V5C vehicle registration certificate ready to upload
- Step 2 – log into your merseyflow account at www.merseyflow.co.uk and click ‘renew my plan’
- Step 3 – pay your £10 annual fee
- Step 4 – upload your documents
- Step 5 – you will receive an email confirming your payment has been received
All renewals will take effect from 14th October 2018, so no-one will lose out by renewing early.
It is also possible for people to renew in person at Merseyflow’s walk-in centre in Runcorn if they don’t have access to the internet.
However they renew, eligible Halton residents will need to provide three current documents to confirm they still qualify for the Halton resident discount. These are:
- 2018/2019 Halton Borough Council tax bill showing their home is in property bands A-F
- A full valid UK driving licence showing their Halton address (Please check the expiry date on the licence)
- Their vehicle’s V5C certificate showing their name and Halton address.
The documents need to be up to date to be accepted – so merseyflow is asking customers to check they provide the right documents to make the whole process as simple and easy as possible.
Anthony Alicastro, Managing Director of merseyflow, said: “Our whole aim is to make this as simple and easy as possible. We’ve made some improvements to the merseyflow website to simplify the process and we’re able to provide much more guidance for customers to help them through the process. We’ll be contacting all Halton residents who need to renew their plan over the next few weeks so all people need to do is follow the instructions to get another year of discounted trips.”
“There’s nothing to lose by renewing early. If you renew now your new 12-month plan will run from October 14, 2018, the one-year anniversary of the opening date of the bridge – not the date that you renew, so renewing now means you’ll beat the rush.”
Mike Bennett, Managing Director of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board, said: “These discounted crossings for the vast majority of Halton residents are made possible because Halton Borough Council re-invested its share of the savings made during the procurement and construction phase to fund the scheme. The council felt this was an important priority and it is essential that people renew their plan every year to continue to benefit from the scheme.”
He added: “We want everyone who qualifies for discounted trips to make sure they re-apply in good time. We need to see up to date documents every year just to make sure that people continue to qualify, but everyone who applied a year ago will find the process is very familiar and straightforward.”
VEHICLES USING MERSEY GATEWAY BRIDGE ON OR AFTER 19 APRIL 2018
The 2018 Order provides a valid and legal power to charge and enforce charges (which are described here as “tolls”) on the Mersey Gateway Bridge from 19 April 2018.
All vehicles using the Mersey Gateway Bridge on or after the 19 April 2018 are required to pay a toll unless exempt or they benefit from the Halton Local User Discount Scheme (LUDS).
VEHICLES WHO USED MERSEY GATEWAY BRIDGE ON OR AFTER 14 OCTOBER 2017 UNTIL 18 APRIL 2018
The Council had in place a valid and legal power to charge and enforce tolls on the Mersey Gateway Bridge from 14 October 2017 to 18 April 2018.
All vehicles that used the Mersey Gateway Bridge on or after the 14 October 2017 were required to pay a toll and liable to enforcement of a toll if no toll was paid, unless exempt or they benefitted from the Halton Local User Discount Scheme (LUDS).
Adjudication by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal (TPT) cannot and does not, in law, invalidate or remove the powers in place from the 14 October 2017 to toll and enforce tolls on the Mersey Gateway Bridge.
Adjudication is specific to the case being considered, and any decision of an Adjudicator only relates to that particular case.
A decision of TPT does not have general effect and can not remove the validity of the Order or the obligation to pay.
Any suggestion that the Council has no power to charge or enforce tolls or that the Council is acting “illegally” is misleading, inaccurate and wrong in law.
REPAYMENT OF TOLLS OR PENALTIES
For the reasons set out above, Halton Council is under no legal obligation to repay any toll or penalty paid on failing to pay a toll.
Consequently, Halton Council will not be repaying any toll or penalty paid on failing to pay a toll.
New leadership for Mersey Gateway Crossings Board following first successful six-months of operation
After leading the Mersey Gateway Project through its first successful six months of operation, Chief Executive Paul Fenwick will leave the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board (MGCB) to be replaced by Managing Director, Mike Bennett.
Her Majesty The Queen and Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex visit Halton to officially open the Mersey Gateway Bridge
Her Majesty The Queen and Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex carried out their first ever engagement together, as they visited Halton this week (14 June 2018) to officially open the new Mersey Gateway Bridge.
As excitement builds in anticipation of the visit of Her Majesty the Queen and the Duchess of Sussex, Halton Borough Council is revealing more details about the event and how young people will be at the centre of the celebrations.
On the morning of Thursday 14 June, Her Majesty and the Duchess of Sussex will carry out their first engagement together when they visit Halton to officially open the Mersey Gateway Bridge.
Having arrived at Runcorn Station, they will travel to the Catalyst Science and Discovery Museum, where the opening event will take place in full view of the iconic bridge.
Guests will include many of those who have helped to make the bridge a reality including local politicians, partners from across the region, community volunteers, staff from the construction consortium and operating teams.
But front and centre on the day, will be around 600 local primary school children, who have been invited to join in the celebrations. In anticipation of the day, children and teachers have been sharing their thoughts:
Maya Neal, Age 9, from Victoria Road Primary School, Runcorn said: “I am so excited to be able to see the Queen and the Duchess because it is a once in a life time opportunity. I feel very lucky that our school was chosen to take part.”
Karl Landrum Headteacher at St Gerard’s Catholic Primary and Nursery School from school said: “It is a honour for our children to be able to witness the official opening of the bridge which is only a few minutes away from our school and therefore part of our school community; I wish all of the organisers lots of luck with such an exciting event for Halton.”
Amelia, Luke, Grace and Mason, Yr 4 pupils at All Saints Upton said:”We can’t believe we are getting the opportunity to see the opening of the Mersey Gateway Bridge. We have loved watching it get built. We have waited our whole lives to see royalty and now get to see the Queen and the Duchess of Susex so soon after seeing her wedding.”
One local schoolchild, Savannah Cafferty, whose birthday falls on the the day the Mersey Gateway opened to traffic – will have an extra special role on the day, presenting a posy to one of the royal party, she said: “When I found out I was going to have a special job on the day I asked ‘Why me?’ I am really happy and excited as the Queen is like a Mother to Britain and she has helped us through trouble. My nan was at the opening of the Silver Jubilee Bridge.”
Savannah’s proud Head Teacher at Farnworth CE Primary School said: “The opening of the Mersey Gateway Bridge is a special moment in Halton’s history and I am thrilled that children from my school will be part of this historic event. The Bridge has made travelling from Widnes to Runcorn and beyond so much easier and it is a spectacular sight in itself. It makes me proud to be a Halton resident knowing that HRH, the Queen and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, are marking the opening of this bridge.”
In addition, local school children will perform a specially commissioned performance of dance and movement, directed by the locally based, Andrew Curphey Theatre Company. Entitled “Bringing Communities together: Bridges of Halton”. The moving piece features 80 children and young people from schools across the borough and tells the story of the many crossings that have existed over the Mersey connecting Widnes and Runcorn through the ages.
On the day, access around Runcorn Station and at the Catalyst Science and Discovery Museum will be restricted. However, members of the public who want to see the Royal party, are advised to go as close as is safely possible to Runcorn Station and Catalyst Science and Discovery Centre. Stewards and the Police will be in both areas for crowd management.
The public is reminded that cyclists and pedestrians are prohibited from the Mersey Gateway Bridge.
Enquiries about the event should be directed to email@example.com