Whitehall’s spending watchdog has suggested that sixteen upgrades to England’s busiest roads could be scrapped because they do not represent value for money. See details here. Great news for Stonehenge World Heritage Site, so long as value for money is given its proper meaning…….
Is it value for money to spend £1.3 billion of taxpayer’s money on a tunnel that would cause almost incalculable damage to a World Heritage site?
Is it value for money to spend £1.3 billion of taxpayer’s money to remove the public’s favourite free view of Stonehenge?
Is it value for money to spend £1.3 billion of taxpayer’s money on a road scheme that doesn’t include spending a single penny on direct traffic calming in the local villages?
Is it value for money to spend £1.3 billion of taxpayer’s money to grant the National Trust’s wish for a theme park walk?
If those questions are properly asked then there’s no way spending £1.3 billion can be justified. What’s more, if the tunnel scheme is cancelled there will be no negative impact whatsoever on the cultural value of the World Heritage Site. Only a false, illusory, let’s-pretend vision will shatter. As indeed it should.