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You want Clarkson to run our roads

The man who called Highways Agency traffic officers 'Wombles' and whose love of a V8 engine and a stretch of open road is legendary is your current top choice for new chief executive of the Agency.

Yes, journalist and Top Gear TV presenter Jeremy Clarkson is the ideal person to run the trunk road network in England and Wales according to 59% of you voting in NCE's online poll.

He is beating Gifford director and former Hampshire County Council deputy county surveyor David Tarrant into second place by a few laps of the M25.

Tarrant, presumably operating on diesel power, has 14% support, but probably will not mind as he has is believed to have already turned down the job.

In third place with 8% of the poll is the Agency's own hard shoulder running guru David Grant.

Our poll is a bit of fun. But underlying it there is a serious attempt to gauge the enthusiasm of civil engineers for a variety of personalities who could succeed Archie Robertson when he steps down at the end of May.

Other poll options included former Friends of the Earth firebrand Tony Juniper (2%), Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering director Steve Tarr (4%) and the Agency's former procurement director Steve Rowsell (5%).

Indications are that engineers would like someone who will stand up for roads, the right to travel freely, and the right to enjoy driving. But will the results be the same next week?

The poll is still open, although now it is down to six survivors including one new entrant – the Agency's traffic operations director Derek Turner who pioneered Red Routes and, while at Transport for London, pedestrianised Trafalgar Square.

The poll closes on Tuesday 29 April. Vote now!

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