Increase in road bridge toll delayed

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DRIVERS may be temporarily spared having to pay £1 to cross the Forth Road Bridge because objectors could force a public inquiry into a planned toll increase.

A proposed 20p rise to the current 80p toll for cars and vans is due to be introduced in October. However, two objections have thrown the move into doubt.

Alastair Andrew, the bridge’s general manager and bridgemaster, will warn councillors next week that the hiccup could also wreck the spending plans for the structure.

He will tell the local authority-controlled Forth Estuary Transport Authority (FETA), which runs the bridge: "The current year’s budget had assumed that a toll increase would take place, effective from 1 October. Clearly this is now doubtful."

FETA members agreed to the toll increase in March, but a six-week consultation saw two objections being lodged with the Scottish Executive.