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Port Of London Authority

Volume 975: debated on Wednesday 5 December 1979

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asked the Minister of Transport when next he expects to meet the chairman of the Port of London Authority.

When the Minister sees the chairman of the PLA, will he be able to gain from him confirmation of the fact that the losses on the upper port of London are largely related to surplus numbers of employees and not to the facilities themselves. Will he confirm that he and his Department see a future for the upper port of London, which already carries 12 million tons of goods?

I entirely understand what the hon. Gentleman is saying. I shall shortly be making a statement on this whole question, and I ask him to bear with me for a few more days.

Most exceptionally, I shall take a point of order from the hon. Member for Kingston upon Hull, East (Mr. Prescott).

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. The right hon. Gentleman assured the House—indeed, I think that he misled it—that the list of 40 services that was referred to during questions was not included in the British Rail report and was contained in a report by the Ramblers Association. I assure the right hon. Gentleman that I have the list with me bearing the name of the British Railways Board, and I wonder whether he would consider making a fresh statement to the House tomorrow with regard to the matter.

Perhaps I may respond to that, Mr. Speaker. I was referring to a report in The Guardian—[HON. MEMBERS: "Ah."] Well, I did say that. That report in The Guardian gave the list. I shall certainly look at the list which the hon. Gentleman has, but it is my understanding that in the strategic plan that has been put forward by British Rail no detailed list of 41 services has been included. That is what I said.