National Highways is responsible for the country’s 4,300 miles of motorways and major A roads, known as the strategic road network (SRN). It will receive £27.4 billion from the government between April 2020 to March 2025 for operations, maintenance, renewals and enhancements.
Local roads, which account for 185,121 miles of the network in England (including London), are manged by the relevant local authority. Funding comes from range of sources, including the Department for Transport (DfT), the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (previously known as the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government), Environment Agency grants and regional growth funding, as well as local authorities’ own sources.
The DfT is providing local authorities (in England, excluding London and the 8 largest city regions) with £2.7 billion between the 2022 and 2025 tax years. This figure includes the remainder of the £500 million a year Pothole Fund announced in 2020, £500m Highways Maintenance Block (HMB) needs element, a £125m HMB incentive element and £260m Integrated Transport Block funding. £4.2 billion additional funding for local transport networks is available to the 8 largest city regions (West Midlands, Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, the North East, the Tees Valley, West Yorkshire, Sheffield City Region and the West of England around Bristol and Bath) until 2027 from the City Region Sustainable Transport Settlements (CRSTS).
In 2018 the Government withdrew funding to Transport for London (TfL), which previously funded a significant proportion of highway maintenance in the capital.
The UK government provides a block grant to the Welsh, Scottish and Northern Irish governments to cover all devolved issues, which include highways and transport.
The Welsh Government is responsible for the maintenance, operation and management of over 75 miles of motorways and over 1,000 miles of trunk roads and works with two trunk road agents – SWTRA in south Wales and NMWTRA in north and mid Wales. It also allocates funds to Welsh local authorities for the maintenance of almost 20,000 miles of local roads.
Scotland has a similar structure: Transport Scotland maintains 2,237 miles of motorways and key trunk routes while councils look after the remaining 32,560 miles.
In Northern Ireland, Transport NI is responsible for the maintenance of over 15,500 miles of public roads.
More information on funding can also be found at: www.roadusers.org.uk