HC Deb 27 October 1943 vol 393 c189
66. Wing-Commander James

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport whether his Department is considering, and consulting with the interests involved, the desirability of taking advantage of the offered opportunity to change the rule of the road in conformity with the rest of the world?

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport (Mr. Noel-Baker)

A number of foreign countries have the same rule of the road as the United Kingdom. To change the rule in any of these countries would require the reconstruction of omnibuses, traffic signs and traffic signals. I recognise, however, that there would be advantages in uniformity, and if an opportunity for general international action should present itself after the war, we should, I think, have to weigh those advantages against the difficulties of changing our present practice.

Wing-Commander James

Is there any reason why we should not take unilateral action in regard to our own roads?

Mr. Noel-Baker

I am afraid it would not be practicable to make a change during the war, and therefore it is probably better to try to secure international action after the war.

Mr. Mathers

Will the Minister keep in mind the fact that, according to the best available evidence, the tendency in this country is to go continually to the left?

Mr. Vernon Bartlett

How many European countries adopt the same rule as we do?

Mr. Noel-Baker

I think there are three, in Europe.