THURROCK MP Jackie Doyle- Price says she has bought the borough more time to oppose a proposed new river crossing.

It comes after the House of Commons transport committee, a cross-party group chaired by Labour MP Louise Ellam, announced on Monday it would look at how river crossings are planned and financed.

The MP’s view is in contrast to that of the council, which insists a decision on where a new crossing will land could be announced within weeks.

Ms Doyle-Price said it would be sensible for the Government to delay making a decision until at least the autumn, when the MPs will report their findings.

She said: “I have been lobbying members of this committee for many months to encourage them to look at the congestion effects of the Dartford Crossing and to look at whether the proposed locations for the new Lower Thames crossing are adequate.

“I am sure the inquiry will inform the location of future crossings and it would be sensible for the Government to await the outcome of that inquiry before making a decision on the location of a new one.”

The Government is considering whether Option A, which would see a new crossing built next to the current one at Dartford, or Option C, which would land between Coalhouse Fort and Tilbury Fort, should be pursued.

Speaking at last week’s council meeting, leader John Kent said: “We’re expecting the Government to announce its final proposal for the new Thames crossing in the next fewweeks – which means it’s all the more important everyone signs our online petitions soon.”

A council spokesman said later: “Officers at the council have been advised that civil servants are looking for a decision to be made before Parliamentary recess on July 22.”