The Whitelegg Report on the Thames Gateway Crossing

by Professor John Whitelegg BA, PhD, FCIT, FILT, FRSA

If new roads, bridges, motorways and bypasses were capable of delivering regeneration, economic revitalisation, job creation and an end to poverty then Glasgow, Hull and most parts of Liverpool would be in the top 10 of the UK’s successful regional and sub-regional economies.

They are not.

If the absence of these very expensive pieces of infrastructure were an indicator of poverty and deprivation then Guildford would be one of the poorest communities in the UK.

It is not.


Livingstone sees London as Motorway City

The Mayor’s Transport Strategy states his intention to proceed with three new river crossings in east London. One is a rail crossing, very unlikely to happen. The others are road/motorway crossings for which the Mayor is already arranging a PPP deal. Thames Gateway is a new name for the hated East London River Crossing, destined to devastate Oxleas Wood.

AND… here’s how you were “consulted”

Highlights of The Mayor’s Draft Transport Strategy has 21 questions of which only one refers to the road bridges:

“The Strategy’s proposal to construct new rail lines, new Thames crossings in East London, and new high quality tram or guided bus schemes.”

So how would you vote?

If you say “I don’t like it”, you are rejecting trams and trains. If you say “I like it”, you are saying you want new Thames Crossings – which are mainly or entirely road crossings.


Neither Mayor nor Greater London Authority (GLA) nor Transport for London (TfL) have properly investigated the case for what the Mayor himself promised before his election: No new roads in London!

Neither Mayor nor GLA nor TfL asked what else could be done with the billions the new roads and bridges will cost. Or whether spending on tubes, trams, trains, buses would give better transport and a better environment.

Neither Mayor nor GLA nor TfL asked whether the new roads will regenerate – or destroy – and whether spending the money differently would regenerate more.

John Whitelegg, professor at three universities, works in transport and planning world-wide. He is uniquely qualified to assess the Thames Gateway Bridge.

The Simon Wolff Charitable Foundation (SWCF) with People Against the River Crossing (PARC) commissioned John Whitelegg to produce the only professional report making the case against London going the Motorway City way.

ORDER THE REPORT: If you oppose road building, nothing will equip you better. If neutral, no report better assesses both sides. If pro-road-building, you get the anti-new-roads arguments at their strogest.

The report is available in paper and electronic form. To order one or more copies, contact the foundation.

The Simon Wolff Memorial Publication (1996)

Articles on science, transport and health by Dr S.Wolff, publications list, obituaries, photographs and tributes £5.00

Poor Show

(ed. John Stewart, Alarm UK/GASP, 1998, co-funded by SWCF)

In 1998, the SWCF was approached by Alarm UK and GASP, a local action group in South London, and asked to co-fund a booklet on poverty, transport and health, which we were pleased to do. The booklet contains interviews with people affected by traffic pollution, as well as useful facts and figures. Dr Barry Gray, a consultant to the SWCF and former Trustee, wrote one of the articles. £2.50