Last month, along with my colleague, Cllr Bruce Berry I visited the new Western Link Flintshire Bridge Converter Station on the Deeside Industrial Estate.
The Converter Station is the final destination for the HVDC cable that has come down from Scotland, coming ashore by Leasowe Lighthouse and cutting right across Wirral.
The station converts the Direct Current (DC), to Alternating Current (AC) the energy comes from a renewable source, and once converted it can be used to power our homes and businesses. The station is absolutely amazing and is so state of the art it can send power back up to Scotland if they need it, converting back from AC to DC.
You can read more about the work of National Grid and the community initiatives HERE
So for the next six weeks we know there will be no Wirral Line trains using the loop line. We also know that Merseyrail have laid on train replacement buses and that Merseytravel will be using the Mersey ferries to transport people to and from their workplaces.
However we also know that human nature being what it is, that many commuters will revert to using their cars. Now while this will cause some disruption and possible delays at the tunnels, it will also generate a huge amount of ‘Extra Income’ for Merseytravel through toll charges, how much will this be? I could not even guess, however I am sure it will be a substantial sum of money running into the tens of thousands of pounds. I believe it would be a great idea if Merseytravel calculated that extra income and instead of making even greater surpluses they donated the extra income to charity, and I would happily nominate Claire House as a beneficiary.
Now I know from the time I served on Merseytravel, that until it was stopped because of a legal challenge that Merseytravel used to donate to charity all the extra money it received via the tolls from those people who simply did not have the right money so put in extra coins, locally Foxfield School and Claire House benefited from this. Sadly now, as I said because a group of people challenged the use of this ‘Extra’ money it had to be stopped. But these are different circumstances and I am sure that Merseytravel could, if they looked find a way to put this extra unexpected income back into the community.
So here’s a plea to the Chairman of Merseytravel, Cllr Liam Robinson, the Chair of the Combined Authority Cllr Joe Anderson and to the Chief Executive, Director General of Merseytravel, Frank Rogers, hey guys do the right thing!