HC Deb 14 March 1938 vol 333 cc28-9
60. Captain Sir William Brass

asked the Home Secretary whether his attention has been called to the recent traffic census taken by the Automobile Association in three Central London thoroughfares in which it was shown that at one census point of 1,157 taximeter cabs which passed 984 were disengaged, at another point of 3,172 which passed 2,365 were without passengers, and at a third point, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. census, of 3,220 which passed 2,710 were disengaged; and, in view of the congestion caused by those crawling taximeter cabs, he will consider issuing orders forbidding this practice; between certain hours of the day in certain of the more congested thoroughfares as an experiment?

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport (Captain Austin Hudson)

I have been asked to reply. I understand that the figures quoted relate to Oxford Street and Piccadilly. Regulations are already in force prohibiting taxi-cabs from loitering in those streets, but the regulations which prohibit loitering do not prevent the right of empty taxi-cabs to pass along the streets.

Sir W. Brass

Will my hon. and gallant Friend communicate with his right hon. Friend the Home Secretary to see that the police do their duty in this matter?

Captain Hudson

In 1937, there were 1,015 prosecutions of taximen for various forms of obstruction. I think the police are doing their best.