Steerpike Steerpike

SNP dualling project delayed by a decade

Credit: Jane Barlow/PA Archive/PA Images

Congratulations to the SNP, which has today given new meaning to the phrase ‘slow and steady wins the race’. Members of hapless Humza’s government have announced today that they will complete dualling of Scotland’s ‘most dangerous road’ by 2035 – a decade later than first planned and a rate of construction that works out at, er, four miles a year. A perfect analogy of Scotland’s progress under the SNP…

So far there have been 121 deaths on the treacherous road since 2009, two years after Alex Salmond promised to fix the death trap. Transport Secretary Mairi McAllan assured the Scottish Parliament today that the upgrade would be finished within the original £3 million budget ‘when adjusted for inflation’. She added that she expects almost half of the project to be completed by 2030 — a mere five years after the entire route was supposed to have been finished. The Nats have a ‘concrete’ plan, McAllan assured the Chamber. Mr S hopes she doesn’t mean that literally… 

But there’s a silver lining for one nationalist at least. Dissident MSP Fergus Ewing pledged to ‘eat his hat’ if the original time scale was met: a meal that he will no longer have to endure. Humble pie for his colleagues might be somewhat more appropriate…

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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