Operation Brock has been reintroduced on the M20 in Kent following the closure of the temporary lorry park at Manston Airport.

The new measures were introduced at 4am on Sunday (21 March), with Eurotunnel and Port of Dover freight being directed into separate lanes.

The barrier on the London-bound side is still in place with traffic still using a contraflow system.

Any hauliers without a Kent Access Pass or a negative Covid certificate are being directed to the new Sevington Inland Border Facility.

Nicola Bell, Highways England south east regional director, said: “These changes are really the first phase of recovery to try to get Kent back to some normality, but moreover it means a streamlined process for freight using the Port of Dover - as they no longer have to divert to Manston."

Logistics UK gave a cautious welcome to the move. Heidi Skinner, Logistics UK head of south east England policy, commented: “Obviously we've got more freight moving down the M20 again so it is a situation we want to monitor.

“We want to make sure that freight is moving as quickly as possible but it does allow that port traffic to access the M20. So these are good steps and moving in the right direction, going back to what we might consider business as normal.”

Meanwhile a lorry park planned for Guston, near Dover, has been delayed by at least six months. The Inland Border Facility had originally been due to open in time for 1 July 2021, but now won’t be operational until January 2022 at the earliest.

The delay is a consequence of the government’s decision to postpone the introduction of full import controls on goods arriving from the EU until next year, the DfT has confirmed.