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State Visits

Volume 170: debated on Thursday 19 April 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he will list the number of occasions in the past year when parts of central London have been closed to traffic due to the arrival of visiting dignitaries; and if he will make a statement on the traffic disruption caused by these closures;(2) why parts of central London were closed to traffic on 3 April; and if he will make a statement on the traffic disruption caused by this closure.

I understand from the Commissioner that parts of central London have been closed to traffic during the past year due to the arrival of visiting dignitaries on the following dates:

  • 6 April 1989—Official visit, President of USSR
  • 8 May 1989—State visit, President of Nigeria
  • 30 May 1989—Official visit, President of USA
  • 5 July 1989—Official visit, Prime Minister of Pakistan
  • 3 April 1990—State visit, President of India
On these occasions parts of central London were closed to traffic for a short time and traffic held up at junctions to facilitate progress of the visitors. In every case, advance warning was given by road signs and via the media. It is inevitable that the closure of major thoroughfares will result in some increased congestion, but every effort is made to plan diversionary routes and to enable traffic to flow freely on these routes.