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Forth Road Bridge (Tolls)

Volume 656: debated on Wednesday 28 March 1962

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8.

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland when he expects to receive the draft schedule of toll charges from the Forth Road Bridge Joint Board; and when he proposes to invite objections to the suggested charges.

I would refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave on 14th March to the right hon. Member for East Stirlingshire (Mr. Woodburn).

I recall the reply the Secretary of State gave to my right hon. Friend, but is the right hon. Gentleman aware that since the Forth Road Bridge Joint Board accepted the principle of toll charges considerable economic changes have been taking place in Fife resulting from pit closures? Does the right hon. Gentleman expect that Fife will be able to attract the necessary industry if toll charges unduly increase the freight charges of those industries? Will he, therefore, assure the House that if toll charges must be imposed they will be of a nominal character?

I am awaiting the schedule that is to be submitted to me. There will be opportunity for a public inquiry if there are objections to the proposed toll charges.

Why is a toll imposed on this particular part of a trunk road while the M.1, which is also a trunk road, has no toll charges?

The hon. Gentleman will be aware, from previous answers that have been given, of the Government's policy in relation to toll charges. This policy has been set out by myself and by the Minister of Transport.