Birmingham: Head of Clean Air Zone 'optimistic' about success

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A group of motorists held a “go-slow protest” on the M60 yesterday to highlight the upcoming charges, set to be introduced at the end of May. Manchester’s clean air zone is to be launched later this year, with many drivers already angry over the charges, with some calling on the local Government to cancel the proposed rules.

Drivers were warned to expect disruption on the M60 as vehicles were reported in convoy passing junction 19 for Middleton and Heaton Park, travelling anticlockwise.

According to the Inrix traffic monitoring system, one lane of traffic was closed and heavy traffic had been reported in the area.

Greater Manchester Police reported that around 100 vehicles were involved in the protest.

In a tweet, they said: “We’re working to minimise disruption on the M60 as a result of a go-slow protest.

“Motorists are advised to find alternative routes whilst officers work with Highways North-West and speak to those involved to bring the disruption to an end, taking action where necessary.

“We recognise the right to a peaceful protest but protests such as this cause significant disrupt to other road users and in particular, emergency vehicles.

“The reported go-slow protest is now believed to have come to an end and traffic is running as normal,” GMP said around two hours after the initial report.

Some high-emission vehicles could be charged £7.50 in daily charges if their car does not meet pollution standards.

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While private cars will not be charged, larger vehicles like HGVs and buses will be charged £60.

It is set to be England’s biggest CAZ, spanning 10 local authority areas across Greater Manchester including Bolton, Bury, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan, and the cities of Manchester and Salford.

Speaking with the BBC, one driver who attended the protest criticised the proposed changes.

Bowden Spence, from Oldham, said: “For me to get to work – there and back – will cost me £70 a week.

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