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Volume 932: debated on Wednesday 25 May 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations he has had from private owners of housing property urging him to advise regional councils' highway authorities to bring some of the older roads in such housing areas into the programme of roads and have them added to the regional list of highways.

None. My right hon. Friend is not aware that this is a problem causing general concern.

Is my hon. Friend aware that in some of the streets or roads that I have in mind, not one of the original owners is in possession? Is he also aware that the regional road authorities expect the present owners to bring their roads up to regulation standards? This cannot be done unless they get on to the list of highways. Since that would also mean great cost—sometimes tens of thousands of pounds—for groups of owners, such people cannot bear the burden. Will he bring in some form of road improvement scheme?

I have a certain sympathy with my hon. Friend's views, but only the regional council can assess the situation properly. It would be wrong for the Secretary of State to intervene in such local matters.