HC Deb 11 February 1946 vol 419 cc15-6
43. Sir G. Fox

asked the Minister of War Transport if he has made any enquiries as to the increase in the dimensions of public service vehicles desired by manufacturers, operators and the trade unions concerned.

82. Mr. Perrins

asked the Minister of War Transport if, in view of the complete agreement of all the trade interests concerned that wider public service vehicles are necessary, he will hold a public inquiry on the question of increased dimensions of public service vehicles.

Mr. Barnes

I have reviewed the question of the maximum width of public passenger vehicles and have decided that, to afford greater comfort for passengers and. crews and to assist the export trade, public service vehicles and trolley vehicles up to eight feet wide should be allowed to operate on roads approved for that purpose. Concessions in regard to the height and weight were announced by my predecessor in November, 1944. I regret I cannot see my way to agree to an increase in the present permitted lengths.

Sir G. Fox

Is the Minister aware that this statement will give great satisfaction and that it will enable bus manufacturers to compete more fairly in the export market?

Mr. Barnes

I am aware that there is a lot to be said for and against this proposal, and it is only on a slight balance of advantage that I have agreed to the modifications.

Mr. Perrins

Will the Minister agree to go to Birmingham and have a ride in one of our eight foot buses so that he can judge for himself the convenience and comfort they afford to passengers?