HC Deb 17 February 1908 vol 184 cc437-8
MR. CATHCART WASON (Orkney and Shetland)

I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board if he will state the numbers of motor cars registered and licences issued in the United Kingdom at the end of 1906 and 1907, and, if possible, the number of horse-drawn vehicles as well; the number of applications for speed limits made by local authorities, and the number of regulations granted up to date; and the number of accidents caused in London, and, if possible, in the United Kingdom, by motor vehicles and horse-drawn vehicles respectively in 1907.


The latest figures as to the number of motor cars registered and drivers' licences issued in the United Kingdom are those given in the Appendix to the Report of the Royal Commission on Motor Cars. They show that on the 30th September, 1905, there were 74,038 registered motor cars and motor cycles and that there were 95,836 drivers' licences in force. I understand, however, that the number of private motor cars and motor cycles upon which licence duties were paid was 67,115 in 1906 and 76,567 in 1907. I have no information as to the total number of horse-drawn vehicles, but for the financial year 1906–7 the number of these vehicles, excluding hackney and stage carriages, upon which licence duty was paid was 413,000. The total number of applications made to the Local Government Board by local authorities in England and Wales for the imposition of speed limits since the Motor Car Act, 1903, came into operation is 103. Of these applications forty-nine have been withdrawn or abandoned, and nineteen have been refused; in twenty-two cases orders prescribing speed limits have been granted or promised, and thirteen are now under consideration. The number of accidents from vehicles in the United Kingdom cannot be given, but figures which have been supplied to me by the Home Office in relation to the Metropolitan Police District show that in 1907 the number of accidents reported to the Metropolitan Police were as respects motor vehicles 16,010, and with respect to horse-drawn vehicles 21,415. Of the former 5,328 were due to mechanically propelled tramcars, and 4,723 to motor omnibuses.