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Palace of Westminster: Pedestrian Access

Volume 488: debated on Monday 23 February 2009

To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission with reference to the answer of 6 November 2006, Official Report, column 671W, on pedestrian access, what progress has been made in ensuring that pedestrian access to the Palace of Westminster is not impeded by inadequate rainwater drainage on St. Margaret's Street; when the House of Commons Commission last discussed this issue with Westminster City Council; what response was received; on how many occasions since December 2008 pedestrian access to the Palace of Westminster has been impeded by rainwater; and if he will make a statement. (256726)

A record is not kept of the number of times pedestrian access to the Palace of Westminster has been impeded by rainwater. The drainage gully on St. Margaret Street adjacent to St. Stephen's Entrance is blocked regularly with rubbish and detritus and Westminster city council arrange for it to be cleared when flooding is causing a nuisance. Further representations will be made to the council to increase the frequency of cleaning in this location and to explore whether the gully can be covered to reduce the likelihood of future blockage. There have been no discussions on this subject between the House of Commons Commission and Westminster city council.