Council Leaders identify some of the potential problems for region resulting from Brexit

One of the biggest problems anticipated for Brexit is the potential traffic congestion resulting from delays to cross-Channel ferries at Portsmouth International Port, especially if traffic is re-routed from Dover, which could have knock-on effect across the region.

lorry lines

Press release issued on behalf of Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and Southampton councils. Ed

Top-tier council Leaders from across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight are working together to make sure the region is prepared for Brexit.

Hampshire County Council Leader Cllr Roy Perry, Leader of the Isle of Wight council, Cllr Dave Stewart, Portsmouth City Council Leader Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson and Southampton City Council Leader Christopher Hammond, have engaged in a series of meetings to ensure the authorities are coordinating their preparations for the UK’s departure from the EU on 29 March.

Reviewing preparations
The meetings are an opportunity to discuss any expected problems and review preparations being made by the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Local Resilience Forum (LRF), which is made up of a range of organisations including councils and emergency services.

The first meeting included a briefing from the chair of the LRF Strategic Co-ordinating Group, Hampshire Constabulary’s assistant chief constable Dave Hardcastle, and further LRF updates will be received at future meetings.

Potential traffic congestion
The biggest problem anticipated is potential traffic congestion resulting from delays to cross-Channel ferries at Portsmouth International Port, especially if traffic is re-routed from Dover, which could have knock-on effect across the county. The Leaders have written to Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling to outline their concerns and requests for support.

These concerns have also been highlighted to the Prime Minister and all Hampshire and Isle of Wight MPs. In particular they have requested better engagement from Highways England and the Ministry of Defence, which owns land that may be of use as a holding space for lorries.

Traffic delays if ‘no deal Brexit’
Currently Portsmouth International Port transports up to 500 lorries a day abroad; if traffic diverts from other ports this will increase significantly. Under a no deal Brexit delays are likely if lorries need extra customs clearance before embarking on a ferry; whereas currently this is not required for vehicles travelling to EU countries.

The distance between the freight check-in desk at Portsmouth International Port and the beginning of the motorway is just 13 lorry lengths, so a queue of 14 lorries or more would mean queuing traffic on the motorway.

The Leaders’ future plans include inviting the region’s MPs to a briefing where they will update them on the reassuring work done by the LRF and discuss next steps.

Vernon-Jackson: Brexit will “affect more than one council area”
Cllr Vernon-Jackson said:

“The issues Brexit will bring are going to affect more than one council area and it’s important we work together to ensure our areas are as resilient as possible to the challenges ahead. By coordinating our efforts we can avoid duplication and minimise costs so no more money than necessary is diverted from already stretched council budgets and vital services.

“As individuals we represent different areas and political parties and I am very pleased everyone is able to put that aside and work together for the greater good.”

Perry: “Continue developing our contingency plans”
Cllr Perry, said:

“As a leading export county, I want to ensure that collectively, we do all we can to support international trade, jobs and businesses, by taking the practical steps needed to respond effectively to whatever the outcome of Brexit may be.

“In the meantime, we will continue developing our contingency plans to ensure that any potential short term adverse impact on local communities, is minimised, and that our residents, including the most vulnerable, are able to receive the goods and services they need.”

Stewart: “Determined impact of any decision is properly managed”
Cllr Stewart said:

“This is an important forum which is enabling all the council leaders to come together and plan for the potential impact of Brexit.

“I am pleased the Island is able to play a key role in this forum. I am determined that the impact of any decision regarding Brexit on the Island is properly managed.

“We know we rely on the ferries for much of our goods and services and I am pleased our unique position is being fully recognised by our council colleagues across Hampshire.”

Hammond: “Working proactively with neighbouring authorities”
Cllr Hammond said:

“There are still many uncertainties about what our relationship will be with the EU and the full consequences of a no-deal Brexit. Despite this, Southampton City Council is working proactively with neighbouring authorities to mitigate a range of possible impacts for our region’s residents and businesses.

“Locally, we’re working with the Port of Southampton and Connect partners to plan for any detrimental traffic impact in the city and the surrounding area which might be caused by an increase in HGV movements across the Solent network.”

Image: sk8geek under CC BY 2.0

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22 Comments on "Council Leaders identify some of the potential problems for region resulting from Brexit"

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Stewart: “Determined impact of any decision is properly managed”

Does our Leader actually know what he means by his statement in this context or perhaps in terms of the Floating Bridge ?

The Isle of Wight council should be asking May if the Island can remain in the EU customs area to protect firms like GKN and Vestas, if they have to relocate or become unviable due to Brexit the whole of the Island’s economy will take hammer blow. I find it hilarious that the Tory Government has just given 13 million GBP to a ferry firm that has… Read more »

If you think that’s hilarious have you seen the latest news – the no ferries ferry firm Seaborne appears to have cut and pasted their terms and conditions from a pizza delivery site.

It would be funny if it didn’t involve huge amounts of money when the sick and disabled are being denied the support that they need.


Your sarcasm meter may be defective.

I possibly phrased the comment badly as I was actually agreeing with you about how ridiculous the whole situation of a ferry less ferry company is and I thought you would be interested to see the latest development regarding Seaborne. The second paragraph was a criticism of the government, not you. Sorry if it wasn’t clear. No offence was intended (except to the government in general and… Read more »

No worries, I notice that one of the directors is an ex submarine commander, which may come in real handy when the whole sorry business sinks beneath the waves without trace. Another triumph for Failing Greyling.


A submarine commander? I underestimated the government, they do have an exit plan after all.

Mark L Francis

I have been trying to book a train journey in April 2019 but their do not appear to be any times confirmed after 29 March 2019. I would not go so far as to compare Brexiteers with Mussolini. At least he (is said) to have got the trains running on time!
(although if there are no times who is to say they aren’t?)

It wasn’t actually a comparison I was making! It was a ‘tongue in cheek’ statement about the massive amount of scaremongering which is taking place over Brexit. We were all led to believe that the sky would fall down. We are being subjected to daily propaganda by the media and a government who have spent two and a half years doing everything in their power to stop… Read more »

The idea was put about at the time that anything with a computer (or computer chip) in would fall on its back with its legs in the air. The scaremongering WAS very similar to now.
My standard reply to anyone enquiring whether the instruments we made would be affected was “They don’t even know what time of day it is!”.

Billy Builder
With the millennium bug organisation’s spent millions and millions of pounds going through billions of lines of code, updating them where necessary to ensure that catastrophe would not happen, and surprise surprise it didn’t. Without all that effort then the millennium bug would have cause catastrophe. BRexit however is a different beast, as BRexit is a bit like cutting your legs off. It’ll take time to walk… Read more »
Hey, remember in the new millennium that none of the worlds computers, microwaves or date-displaying gadgets would work because they weren’t set to go past the year 1999? The end of the world as we knew it was about to happen at one second past midnight in the year 2000. We watched and waited as the clock ticked. Mass panic that nothing would work or any information… Read more »
It never happened because thousands and thousands of highly skilled programmers spent maybe 10 years working on the problem before the century kicked over. When computer systems were originally written starting in the 1950’s disk space was extremely expensive and literally every byte counted and cost money. If you have a million customers on a computer system, you could save 2 million bytes by storing say 1950… Read more »
More ‘Doom and Gloom’ about a democratic decision by the voters in the UK… I aint seen Famine and pestilance as yet,, but I am sure it’s on the way! We (the electorate..remember them??) don’t even know the whats, whens or hows of Brexit, not because of poor information prior to the vote, but the massive amount of tap dancing by the remoaners (which include HMG, BBC… Read more »
There is too much scaremongering about Brexit. Firstly there is no will or need to build a barrier between NI and the republic. Why all the fuss? The EU won’t build a border neither will GB. Posturing by the EU and Varadkar. Secondly all this fuss about potential food shortages because of port problems in Kent, 95 per cent of our sea business is done away from… Read more »
Mark L Francis
Is there still a majority for Brexit? The people who did not vote in the 2nd referendum (I was too young to vote in 1973)will be able to assess how things have turned out in the last 2 years and many Leave voters will have died of old age(or shame at having foisted the worst self-inflicted disaster on the country since WW1). All the Remain voters voted… Read more »
M L Francis: As you have decided to give your opinion to comment that some of my elder family should have died of shame at having foisted the worst self-inflicted disaster on the country since WW1 has now really peed me off. Now you must listen to the real truth. You have quoted that all the Remain voters voted for the same thing, which is indeed correct.… Read more »
Billy Builder

Perhaps all councillors and MPs in the local area should petition the government to hold a new referendum on BRexit going forward to ensure that we truly have a BRexit outcome that people want. I would also suggest that they commission a local referendum to determine what is right for the Solent area.

Billy Builder
I would also suggest that in any new referendum an individual’s votes should be factored by an amount proportional to the number of years BRexit will effect that that individual. That is, if we assume a life span of 100 years a 90 year old would have 10% life expectancy left whereas a 20% year old would have 80% left. That being the case, the 20 year… Read more »
What about discounting all the young people who couldn’t be bothered to vote last time? Or not letting bigots like you vote at all? In the age group 35-54 women were 11 points more likely to vote remain than men. What are you going to do about weighting for that? The more educational qualifications someone had attained the more likely they were to vote remain so are… Read more »
Billy Builder

It’s nothing to do with bigotry, it’s a recognition that the young will be massively more effected by BRexit than the old. Indeed using my suggestion my vote would be significantly less weighted than an 18 year old, as I’m an old bugger.

You could claim to be any age on a page like this but I’ll give you the respect of assuming you are telling the truth. It makes no difference though as being in a group does not give you the right to disenfranchise other members of that group. If you were in charge of the country is that what you would do – take the vote away… Read more »