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Traffic Restrictions, South Coast Towns

Volume 387: debated on Wednesday 3 March 1943

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asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport whether he is aware that in several coastal towns in the South of England where, as a result of restrictions upon visitors and war conditions generally, there is only a small percentage, compared with that of pre-war days, of traffic upon the roads, a number of one-way streets and other regulations involving detours are still in existence; and whether he will order their abolition, thus effecting a big saving in petrol, especially in public-service vehicles?

I have been asked to reply. Local authorities have, at my hon. Friend's request, reviewed all the one-way and similar traffic arrangements involving detours which are not justified on traffic or safety grounds, and steps will be taken as soon as possible to suspend such arrangements for the time being. If my Noble Friend has any particular cases in mind in which he thinks that changes should be made, my hon. Friend will be glad to make special inquiries.

Is my hon. and gallant Friend aware that there has been a scandalous—almost criminal—waste of petrol as a result of the inability of the local police authorities to appreciate that we are at war, and will he take the opportunity afforded by the fact that those authorities are about to be superseded by larger areas of seeing that this scandalous waste of petrol does not continue? Can I have an answer?

The answer which I have already given gives to my Noble Friend an undertaking that the matter is going to be dealt with.

In view of the very unsatisfactory nature of the answer, I beg to give notice that I will raise the matter on the Adjournment.