Lorry drivers across England will benefit from more parking spaces, better welfare facilities and safer rest areas thanks to £16.5 million in joint government and industry investment.

The Roads Minister confirmed that 38 truckstops across England will invest £6 million from the Department for Transport (DfT), with a further £10.5 million coming from industry, to significantly improve their facilities for lorry drivers.

The upgrades will include new showers and restaurants, as well as better lighting and secure fencing around rest areas so drivers can feel safer and sleep with greater peace of mind. The measures will also create around 430 new parking spaces for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) to free up local roads.

Today’s measures are part of our plan to grow the economy by improving working conditions for lorry drivers, supporting new jobs in the haulage industry and attracting more people towards a brilliant career in logistics, to deliver a brighter future for all.

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The crucial improvements will also help decarbonise the haulage sector by installing new chargepoints to power electric HGVs and solar panels on lorry driver facilities to make them as sustainable as possible.

The measures follow £15 million in joint government and industry funding for similar improvements announced in September last year as part of the fund’s first application window. This takes the total joint investment from the department and the sector to improve lorry roadside facilities to up to £31 million.

Roads Minister, Guy Opperman, said:

Our lorry drivers are the backbone of a successful economy, ensuring food, goods and crucial medical supplies can get where they need to be, all over the country.

That’s why it’s only right we leave no stone unturned when it comes to supporting our lorry drivers as part of our plan to grow the economy, and today’s £16.5 million in joint government and industry funding will provide them with the safe, spacious and modern facilities they deserve.

From the Ashford International Truck Stop in Kent to Bardon Truck Park in Leicestershire and Immingham Lorry Park in Lincolnshire, the funding will be spread across England to ensure all lorry drivers across England can benefit from better roadside facilities and better working conditions.

The new investment comes from the government’s HGV parking and driver welfare grant scheme, a joint investment between government and industry to support the haulage sector and provide lorry drivers with modern, secure facilities all across the country.

The scheme draws on the national survey on lorry parking, 2022, which provides important evidence as to what improvements are needed and where to boost the nation’s roadside infrastructure. With hauliers required to take mandatory breaks and rest periods, building better roadside facilities will improve the quality of HGV drivers’ rest and recovery, ensuring everyone can feel safe on our roads.

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Britain’s roads are already among the safest in the world and the government is committed to helping the sector improve driver welfare, boost drivers’ security and continue to guarantee road safety.

Declan Pang, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at the Road Haulage Association (RHA), said:

We are delighted to see the government’s match funded grant scheme being awarded to projects which will make a tangible difference to the experiences of lorry drivers and provide much needed additional parking capacity to address the well-known shortage of spaces.

We are pleased to see facilities operators contribute funding and commit to improving security and conditions at the sites they operate. We look forward to seeing the positive impact the funding will have across the range of projects.

Lorry drivers are also benefitting from smoother and improved roads thanks to the largest ever funding increase of £8.3 billion to resurface over 5,000 miles of local roads all the way through to 2034, made possible by reallocated High Speed 2 (HS2) funding.

Today’s announcement comes after £200 million to roll out up to 370 zero emission trucks and a further £2 million given to small and medium-sized businesses in a separate competition to boost innovation and green tech in freight to decarbonise the sector.

The government has also invested £645,000 to support the brilliant Generation Logistics campaign from the CILT and Logistics UK, which is raising awareness of the logistics sector and its career opportunities to boost recruitment and retention of a more skilled and diverse workforce.

This latest investment comes on top of the government’s Plan for Drivers to put drivers back in the driving seat, which includes a crackdown on disruptive roadworks and better digital information to boost sat-nav accuracy, and new measures to make it easier to switch to electric vehicles and install more chargepoints.

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Ron Perry, owner of Dan Perry & Sons, said:

The DfT welfare grant scheme goes a long way towards realising our ambitious project of delivering modern, secure and appealing facilities for lorry drivers to park overnight.

Without the grant from the department, this project simply would not be viable for us. We very much look forward to delivering the improvements so that we can provide lorry drivers the fantastic facilities they deserve.