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Terminus Place

Volume 524: debated on Wednesday 3 March 1954

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asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation if he is aware that virtually no traffic uses Terminus Place, S.W.I, travelling from East to West; that it is now mainly used for costermongers' barrows; and as traffic from West to East is prohibited and thus adds nearly one-quarter of a mile to vehicles travelling from Victoria Station to Victoria Street, if he will now consider making a one-way street in the opposite direction.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation
(Mr. Hugh Molson)

No, Sir. The present arrangement is supported by the police, the London and Home Counties Traffic Advisory Committee and our own engineers, who consider that it has improved the traffic conditions at this point and that to reverse the one-way direction would have the opposite effect.

Would my hon. Friend ask the three eminent authorities to spend half an hour one day discussing the matter with local barrow boys and "coppers," who know much more about it than his expert advisers?

If my hon. Friend's suggestion were carried out, it would mean that traffic moving out of Terminus Place would cut across the heavy stream of: buses coming into Victoria Station, on; the one hand, and two streams of traffic passing out, on the other.

Will the hon. Gentleman give an assurance that in tidying up this problem he will do nothing to force out of business many of these costermongers, some of whom are my constituents? Is he aware that they are a vital and lively part of the London scene and that many of them have old-fashioned private enterprises? If he does anything to impair their business, will he promise that proper compensation will be paid to them on the lines favoured by Government supporters?

There is no intention of interfering with these enterprising costermongers, but when I paid a visit after lunch this afternoon I found only two of them there.