HC Deb 12 April 1948 vol 449 c609
34. Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

asked the Minister of Transport if he will exercise his powers under Section 4 (1) of the Transport Act, 1946, and issue a general direction to the Transport Commission that representatives of the Press are not to be obstructed in carrying out their duties of photographing and reporting incidents connected with railway accidents.

The Minister of Transport (Mr. Barnes)

No, Sir. This is a matter which should be left to the discretion of the British Transport Commission, who inform me that representatives of the Press covering railway accidents are permitted to enter railway premises on producing evidence of their identity, and are given every assistance possible in the circumstances by responsible railway officers.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

If I send to the right hon. Gentleman particulars of a case in which that discretion was exercised in precisely the contrary direction to the one of which he has informed the House will he look into it?

Mr. Barnes

It would be better if the hon. Gentleman sent it direct to the British Transport Commission and so saved time.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

In that case, will the right hon. Gentleman tell us who is responsible to this House for what they do?

Mr. Barnes

That has already been fully dealt with, and, in any case, I am informed there has been no complaint from the Press regarding particular matters of this kind.

Captain Crookshank

But is not nationalisation so perfect that there are not going to be' any accidents?