A scheme to minimise traffic congestion for drivers on busy roads in Kent and London is being renewed after first being introduced in 2015.

The Lane Rental schemes, which charges utility companies up to £2,500 a day for roadworks on busy roads during peak times, were scheduled to finish in March 2019.

However, Kent and Transport for London will continue with the schemes, as announced by Transport Secretary Chris Grayling yesterday (December 26).

Mr Grayling said: “Roadworks cause no-end of problems for drivers when they’re done on busy roads and at peak times.

“We’ve seen disruption to road users severely drop when works are carried out on quieter stretches away from heavy traffic.

“Allowing Kent and London to continue with their Lane Rental schemes will mean millions of drivers will have better journeys.”

Giving councils power to charge utility companies for roadworks is believed to encourage firms to work on quieter roads and to avoid busy times.

Glynn Barton, director of Network Management at TfL said: "By encouraging roadworks to take place away from the busiest roads at busiest times the scheme has been a resounding success in reducing the amount of congestion in London caused by roadworks – helping to improve journey times for bus passengers, cyclists and drivers, while tackling emissions."

The scheme has resulted in businesses collaborating on works to avoid the same roads being dug up twice.

Matthew Balfour, Kent County Council’s cabinet member for Highways, added: “Kent County Council is pleased that with the removal of the sunset clause it is able to continue its successful Lane Rental Scheme.

“The scheme has incentivised a change in how work is carried out on the busiest parts of Kent’s road network so that disruption is minimised by: working differently with new technology; thinking differently about how work is carried out; working at different times of day; and better planning of work."