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Car Ownership

Volume 167: debated on Monday 12 February 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what are the levels of car ownership by size of settlement.

[holding answer 9 February 1990]: In 1985–86 the average number of cars per household and the percentage of households with at least two cars was as follows:

Type of areaPopulation (thousands)Average number of cars per householdPercentage of household with at least two cars
Urban>2500·6712
Urban100–2500·7815
Urban50–1000·7513
Urban25–500·7613
Urban3–250·8616
Rural1·0627
Great Britain0·7815

Source: National Travel Survey

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what are the rates of change in car ownership by size of settlement.

[holding answer 9 February 1990]: The increase in the number of cars per household between 1975–76 and 1985–86 was as follows:

Type of areaPopulation (thousands)Average number of cars per householdPer cent, increase
1975–761985–861975–76 to 1985–86
Urban>2500·530·6727
Urban100–2500·580·7834
Urban50·1000·580·7530
Urban25–500·680·7611
Urban3–250·700·8623
Rural0·831–0628
Great Britain0·630·7823

Source: National Travel Survey.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research his Department has done into levels of car ownership by income; and what are the latest figures.

[holding answer 9 February 1990]: This information is provided by the family expenditure survey 1987, which shows for example that 7 per cent. of households with an income of under £45 per week have a car or van available, 54 per cent. of those with incomes between £125 and £150 per week and 98 per cent. of those with incomes over £550 per week. Multiple car ownership occurs at almost all household income levels. At about average household income, 63 per cent. of households have one car or van available, 10 per cent. have two, and 1 per cent. have three or more.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research his Department has done into levels of car ownership in relation to communities comprising small scattered settlements.

[holding answer 9 February 1990]: The Department of Transport has done no research on this topic. The most appropriate source of data for this work would be the 1981 census, which can provide data at enumeration district level.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether in the course of research done in connection with the national road traffic forecast 1989 his Department looked at levels and rates of change in car ownership by size of settlement; and if he will make a statement.

[holding answer 9 February 1990]: The Department makes local forecasts of origins and destinations of car trips at the local authorities district level consistent with the national forecasts, but these forecasts are not differentiated by size of settlement.