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Road Schemes, London

Volume 245: debated on Wednesday 19 November 1930

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asked the Minister of Transport how many London men were employed on arterial roads receiving financial assistance from the London County Council and from the Government at the last available date, and on the same date in 1929, 1928, and 1927, respectively?

I assume that the hon. Member refers to the programme of works on arterial roads arranged for in the year 1923–24 and carried out under the direct supervision of my Department, towards the cost of which the London County Council made a contribution on condition that a pro- portion of the labour employed should be recruited from the London Employment Exchanges. The programme of works referred to, estimated to cost £3,000,000, is now practically completed and the number of men so recruited who were in employment on 31st October, 1930, was 42. On the corresponding date in 1929, 1928 and 1927, the respective numbers were 141,272 and 664. I would add that other schemes have been carried out under the direct supervision of the Ministry towards the cost of which the London County Council have contributed, but without the condition regarding recruitment through London Exchanges, and in these cases information is not available in the Department as to the number of London men employed on the works.

Is it proposed to initiate any new schemes on similar lines to meet the special conditions of unemployment this winter, or is this to be allowed to lapse?

I am not sure that schemes could be submitted on exactly similar lines, because a great deal of this work has now been completed. We are in negotiation with the London County Council as to a considerable programme of public improvements which I am anxious to get carried forward at the earliest possible date.