Ian Gallagher, the FTA’s policy manager for Wales and the South West, said: “The cripplingly high cost of using the Severn Bridge is a huge detriment to businesses in South Wales and western England. Some of FTA’s members, which operate vans and trucks, are spending tens of thousands of pounds each month just on bridge tolls, making it a tax on doing business in this part of the UK. A serious rethink is needed.”

The FTA is also advocating a lower tariff for night-time crossings for commercial vehicles. Gallagher continued: “At present, it costs our members up to £16.30 each time they cross the bridge into Wales. If that figure were to be reduced, overall or overnight, this could be just the sort of stimulus the economy in South Wales in particular needs.” Light commercials up to 3.5 tonnes are charged £10.90 and this includes an unladen Fiesta Van. The equivalent passenger car, even with five people on board, costs £5.40; what a rip-off.