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Traffic Congestion, London

Volume 526: debated on Wednesday 28 April 1954

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29.

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what has been the result of his consideration of proposals to relieve congestion in London.

I dealt with this matter rather fully in my speech in the Adjournment debate on 15th April, and I have nothing further to add.

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that he had nothing to state on that occasion? The hon. Gentleman has not given the House any information of what is being done to relieve traffic congestion in London. He said that consideration was being given to it. Can he tell us the nature of the consideration? Did not the Easter traffic indicate the urgency that something should be done?

I made as full a statement as it was possible for me to do in the somewhat limited time available. The hon. Member will remember that he himself made the longest speech in that debate.

Will my hon. Friend communicate with the British Transport Commission and ask them if they will suggest to bus drivers and to drivers of other public service vehicles that they should not close up on zebra crossings and so become stationary, impeding the natural flow of pedestrians? That is happening at many places in London.

Can the Parliamentary Secretary say whether his right hon. Friend is taking the London traffic problem at all seriously? Is he aware that when I asked the right hon. Gentleman to consider outstanding London cases, for example Hyde Park Corner, all he did was to make a contemptuous reference to London as if it deserved no consideration at all? Will he try to reconcile his right hon. Friend to the fact that London exists and does require attention?

The right hon. Gentle man has been Minister of Transport and is aware that my right hon. Friend is the Traffic Authority. My right hon. Friend gives a great deal of time to this matter, which requires very careful consideration. He is trying to deal with a problem which none of his predecessors have been able to deal with. With regard to Hyde Park Corner, I answered a Question on that subject recently and said that I did not think it was one of the cases in London which required priority treatment.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that within a week of the Minister's scorning of the Hyde Park Corner suggestion there was a terrible bus accident at Hyde Park Corner?

That accident was not due to Hyde Park Corner but to the negligence of the driver.*