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A75 failures highlighted by MP

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By Euan Maxwell
A75 failures highlighted by MP

A LOCAL MP has accused the Scottish Government of repeatedly failing to follow through on committments to upgrade the A75 — and urged them to “get the job done” after a new report backed improvements to the route.

Speaking via video link at a Commons debate on the Union Connectivity Review on Tuesday, David Mundell, MP for Dumfriesshire, said his constituents would be “absolutely appalled” at the neglect of the Gretna to Stranraer tunk road, which he has long campaigned for the dualling of, describing it as “one of the most important strategic routes in the UK”.

He said a lack of infrastructure investment in the region comes as “something of a surprise”, adding: “Back in 1997, when Alasdair Morgan, the former MP, was campaigning, the A75 was Scotland’s forgotten road and was to be prioritised. Then, in 2001, I read in my local paper that the A75 was the Nationalists’ top priority. It had been identified in an SNP policy paper as an absolute in terms of upgrading Scotland’s transport infrastructure. But still there is no meaningful upgrade to that road.”

Sir Peter Hendy’s Union Connectivity Review, published by the Department for Transport (DfT) last week, concluded that “higher capacity and faster connection” is required on the road to handle passengers and freight travelling to and from Northern Ireland and the EU.

Mr Mundell welcomed the report and said it draws attention to the “strategic importance” of the road, whilst also setting out to improve cross-border routes for those travelling from Dumfriesshire to Carlisle for work.