The Mersey Gateway Project

Almost 24 million journeys made over the River Mersey in Halton in 2022

January 30, 2023MerseylinkNews

New figures released by merseyflow show that residents, commuters and visitors in Halton made almost 24 million journeys over the Mersey Gateway and Silver Jubilee bridges in 2022 as year-on-year journey levels continue to rise since Covid.

This includes growing journey numbers across the new look Silver Jubilee Bridge, with October and November 2022 the busiest months for traffic yet since it re-opened in early 2021.

Journey levels are up and PCN levels are down on the two toll bridges with journey numbers for October-December 2022 rising by 300,000 compared to the same period last year, whilst year-on-year PCN numbers continue to fall.

The newly released quarterly figures from merseyflow include trips made across both the Mersey Gateway Bridge and the Silver Jubilee Bridge, both of which are covered by the same merseyflow toll/charging system. They cover October-December 2022, and show:

  • Almost 24 million journeys were made across the two bridges during 2022 – this made it the second busiest year for journeys for traffic over the river in Halton since the Mersey Gateway Bridge opened in 2017
  • Journey numbers are up and PCN levels are down year on year – quarterly journey numbers for the autumn 2022 period were up by 300,000 compared to 2021, while PCN numbers fell by 5,000
  • October and November were the busiest months ever for the new look Silver Jubilee Bridge – and it almost reached the landmark of 1million journeys across the quarter, reaching 980,000
  • A record number of journeys were paid for using the merseyflow Quick-Pay app – which now handles over 100,000 payments every month
  • Over 97.4% of journeys were paid for on time – the vast majority of people are paying for their journeys by midnight the day after they cross

Mike Bennett, Managing Director of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board, said: “It’s reassuring to see that journey levels are continuing to rise year-on-year as we recover from the pandemic and people are resuming their normal activities. Especially as the almost 24 million journeys made over the two bridges in Halton are now much easier and quicker than we’ve been used to in the past. We’re proud that people can rely on the time savings the bridges continue to provide and it’s great to see more people making use of the re-opened Silver Jubilee Bridge as an alternative route across the River Mersey.”

Neil Conway, Chief Executive of merseyflow, said: “The vast majority of crossings over the Mersey Gateway and Silver Jubilee bridges are being paid for on time using our auto pay systems, including our Quick-Pay app, which we can see is continuing to result in a lower number of PCNs being issued. We’re continuing to make improvements to the ways in which our regular customers can manage their plans and we will be roiling these out over the coming year.”

The quarterly merseyflow dashboard provides a range of in-depth statistics and graphs which show information on the number of crossings made, average daily traffic, number of PCNs issued, methods of payment, payments made on time, total revenue, and what percentage of this comes from PCNs.

Cracking success as hundreds of Easter eggs to be delivered to kids in Halton

Hundreds of less fortunate children around Halton will receive Easter treats thanks to the ‘egg-cellent’ success of an annual appeal hosted by the organisations behind the Mersey Gateway and Silver Jubilee bridges.

Hundreds of Easter eggs were collected by tolling operator merseyflow and consortium Merseylink, who kicked off the campaign by donating £500 worth of Easter eggs.

Members of the public, along with merseyflow and Merseylink staff, generously donated chocolate treats to the merseyflow Walk-In Centre in Runcorn throughout March as part of the appeal.

The Easter eggs will be distributed to hundreds of disadvantaged children from some of Halton’s most deprived areas by Halton Children’s Centres in Runcorn and Widnes.

Denise Caldwell, Early Help Officer with Runcorn Children’s Centres, said: “After having to close the appeal to members of the public last year due to covid restrictions, it’s fantastic to see that people still want to help and get involved. I’d like to thank the teams at merseyflow and Merseylink for their generous donations and continued support, every Easter egg donated will be very gratefully received.”

Hugh O’Connor, General Manager for Merseylink, said: “Engaging with charities such as Halton Children’s Centres is very important to us, and we’re pleased to have been able to get involved to brighten up the Easter period for children in the area.”

Helen Williams, Marketing Manager at merseyflow, said: “This year’s Easter Egg appeal has been a smashing success, and I’m thrilled with the amount of donations we’ve received from the public and teams here at merseyflow and Merseylink. We’re pleased to be able to support Halton Children’s Centres and the great work they do for children and families here in Halton.”

Mersey Gateway celebrates four-year anniversary as journey numbers continue to rise

October 29, 2021MerseylinkNews, Uncategorized

Traffic levels across the river in Halton are almost back to pre-pandemic levels as 14 October marks the fourth anniversary of the Mersey Gateway Bridge opening.

Tolling provider merseyflow is expecting to see two million vehicles making crossings each month across the Mersey Gateway and Silver Jubilee bridges this autumn.

In total, Halton residents, businesses and commuters have made 86.3 million journeys over the River Mersey in Halton since the Mersey Gateway Bridge opened at midnight on 14 October 2017.

The newly-released figures from merseyflow include trips made across both the Mersey Gateway Bridge and the Silver Jubilee Bridge, which re-opened in February this year.

The most recent quarterly figures, which are presented in the latest Mersey Gateway Bridge and Silver Jubilee Bridge dashboard and cover July-September 2021, show:

  • Traffic levels in summer were back to 95% of pre-pandemic volumes – this was the busiest quarter since 2019 and the autumn is expected to see two million vehicles a month using the bridges
  • An average of just 9,000 vehicles a day use the Silver Jubilee Bridge – far less than the 80,000 vehicles a day it used to carry
  • Over 97% of journeys were paid for on time – the vast majority of people are paying for their journeys by midnight the day after they cross
  • Over 90% of payments are made through digital or automated channels – www.merseyflow.co.uk, the merseyflow quick pay app and auto top-up options are widely used by customers
  • PCNs remain below historical levels from 2018 / 2019 – though they have increased alongside the rise in journey numbers

Mike Bennett, Managing Director of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board, said: “As we approach this anniversary it’s worth casting your mind back to remember what crossing the river in Halton was like before the new bridge was developed.”

Mike added: “Before the Mersey Gateway opened, the Silver Jubilee Bridge used to carry all of this traffic – up to 80,000 vehicles a day – through Halton, and it was regularly closed or disrupted by incidents or breakdowns. The split of traffic between the two bridges to accommodate total demand matches what was hoped for and is providing tangible benefits to local residents either side of the Silver Jubilee Bridge whose lives were affected by the traffic conditions on the approaches to it. These approach routes, which have now been removed or simplified, also formed a real barrier to investment and development. Today, we have much more reliable and resilient crossings, with significant extra capacity, it gives people and businesses extra confidence that they can live, work, invest in and travel through Halton without the disruption, delays and uncertainty that we all had to endure when planning to cross the river.”

Neil Conway, Chief Executive of merseyflow, said: “It’s really encouraging that the majority of customers are choosing to pay for their journeys using digital or automated channels, like our auto top-up system or through the merseyflow website and app. We’ve invested significantly to develop and improve these payment options and it’s good to see that customers are finding them useful to make paying for their journeys as simple and easy as possible.”

The quarterly merseyflow dashboard provides a range of in-depth statistics and graphs which show information on the number of crossings made, average daily traffic, number of PCNs issued, methods of payment, payments made on time, total revenue and what percentage of this comes from PCNs.

Silver Jubilee Bridge now open – guidance for merseyflow customers

March 10, 2021MerseylinkNews

The Silver Jubilee Bridge between Runcorn and Widnes is now open to traffic and operating as a toll bridge – you have to pay a charge to cross it.

When you drive across the Silver Jubilee Bridge, you will need to pay a toll/charge to cross it, just as you do when crossing the Mersey Gateway Bridge.

Both bridges are using exactly the same charging, discount and registration system.

I’m already registered with merseyflow – do I need to do anything?

No. If you are already registered with merseyflow, you don’t need to do anything differently to start using and paying to cross the Silver Jubilee Bridge.

If you qualify for and already have a discount plan and merseyflow sticker that you use for the Mersey Gateway Bridge, that same discount plan and merseyflow sticker will now work for the Silver Jubilee Bridge too.

This applies to people with all types of merseyflow accounts and profiles including:

  • Halton Resident plans
  • Blue Badge holder plans
  • Pre-pay plans with discounts of 5 or 10%
  • Monthly passes
  • App profiles

I’m not registered with merseyflow – what do I need to do?

Registering with merseyflow is the easiest and cheapest way to pay for your crossing. It is the only way to get a discount on the toll charge.

However, if you’re not registered with merseyflow, you can pay the charge for crossing the Silver Jubilee Bridge in exactly the same way that you currently pay for the Mersey Gateway Bridge.

The cost per crossing depends on your vehicle type, but starts at £2 for a standard sized car or a small van.

If you use either bridge and aren’t registered with merseyflow, and don’t pay by midnight the day after you cross, then you will receive a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN).

There are currently four options for drivers who aren’t registered to pay for bridge crossings:

  • By downloading and using the merseyflow app (24-hours a day, seven days a week). https://www.merseyflow.co.uk/quick-pay-app
  • Online at www.merseyflow.co.uk (24-hours a day, seven days a week).
  • By phone on 01928 878 878 – between 9am and 5.30pm Monday-Saturday and 10am-4pm Sunday and Bank Holidays. Outside of these opening hours payment can be taken 24/7 using the automated service for journeys you have already made, which you can reach by phoning 01928 878 878.
  • At one of 10,000 Payzone outlets across the UK.

There are no payment booths on either bridge. This is to enable traffic to move freely across the river.

You can read more about the essential repair work that has taken place on the Silver Jubilee Bridge over the last three years at Halton Borough Council’s website.

Silver Jubilee Bridge to Re-Open soon

February 25, 2021MerseylinkNews, Uncategorized

The Silver Jubilee Bridge is scheduled to re-open towards the end of February 2021.

When it re-opens, you will need to pay a toll/charge to cross the Silver Jubilee Bridge, just as you do when crossing the Mersey Gateway Bridge, and it will use exactly the same charging, discount and registration system.

I’m already registered with merseyflow – do I need to do anything?

No. If you are already registered with merseyflow, you don’t need to do anything differently to start using and paying to cross the Silver Jubilee Bridge.

If you qualify for and already have a discount plan and merseyflow sticker that you use for the Mersey Gateway Bridge, that same discount plan and merseyflow sticker will work for the Silver Jubilee Bridge too.

This applies to people with all types of merseyflow accounts and profiles including:

  • Halton Resident plans
  • Blue Badge holder plans
  • Pre-pay plans with discounts of 5 or 10%
  • Monthly passes
  • App profiles

I’m not registered with merseyflow – what do I need to do?

Registering with merseyflow is the easiest and cheapest way to pay for your crossing. It is the only way to get a discount on the toll charge.

However, if you’re not registered with merseyflow, you can pay the charge for crossing the Silver Jubilee Bridge in exactly the same way that you currently pay for the Mersey Gateway Bridge.

The cost per crossing depends on your vehicle type but starts at £2 for a standard sized car or a small van.

You will need to pay merseyflow by midnight the day after you cross, or you will receive a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN).

There are currently four options for drivers who aren’t registered to pay for bridge crossings:

  • By downloading and using the merseyflow app (24-hours a day, seven days a week). https://www.merseyflow.co.uk/quick-pay-app
  • Online at www.merseyflow.co.uk (24-hours a day, seven days a week).
  • By phone on 01928 878 878 – between 9am and 5.30pm Monday-Saturday and 10am-4pm Sunday and Bank Holidays. Outside of these opening hours payment can be taken 24/7 using the automated service for journeys you have already made, which you can reach by phoning 01928 878 878.
  • At one of 10,000 Payzone outlets across the UK.

There will be no toll booths on the Silver Jubilee Bridge, so you won’t be able to pay by cash or card at a toll booth as you cross it.

You will need to pay merseyflow by midnight the day after you cross, or you will receive a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN).

What happens if I don’t pay on time?

If you use either bridge and aren’t registered with merseyflow, and don’t pay on time, then you will receive a PCN.

Find out more

Halton Borough Council is overseeing the final work to be done on the Silver Jubilee Bridge before it opens.

You can read more about the essential repair work that has taken place on the Silver Jubilee Bridge over the last three years at Halton Borough Council’s website.

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