Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Top of the pile

Christmas is a time when the Civil Service churns out announcements, so it was doubly pleasing today when we received confirmation about our Local Transport Plan (LTP's). This is the mechanism by which Highway Authorities like Darlington receive money for road schemes and the like.

The Government has been assessing how successful our first 5-year Local Transport Plan between 2000 and 2005 was. Its judgement is that it was excellent - Darlington is the only local authority in the North East with this rating. The letter commented;

"Particular areas of strength include road safety, the journey to school and parking, and we are pleased to see road safety and school travel clearly embedded within a range of themes and initiatives. The focus on physical measures to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists, coupled with extensive targeted education, training and publicity has helped you to meet road safety targets, whilst delivering local targets to increase cycling and walking across the borough.

There is a clear commitment to making a difference to the school journey, and your approach to cycle training is particularly robust. Partnership working is a strength, and we are pleased to see that you have developed strong and effective partnerships with a wide range of organisations. "

Our current LTP has been classed as "good" (there were no better scores in the North East again).

As a result, Darlington Council will receive an additional £226,000 for 2007/08 and an additional £686,000 over the period of the second Local Transport Plan (2006-2011). I'm delighted with the assessment, which is the fruit of significant effort by officers and our partners over the years.

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