HC Deb 02 February 1948 vol 446 c1447
6. Captain Marsden

asked the Minister of Transport what is the mileage of inland-canal waterways now available for water transport; and what was the mileage in 1939.

Mr. Barnes

Full information is not available, but it is estimated that there are now approximately 2,400 miles of navigable canals and locked river navigations, as compared with 2,700 miles in 1939.

Captain Marsden

Does the Minister mind that the mileage will steadily decrease, or is he intending to take steps to encourage the use of canals?

Mr. Barnes

I certainly do not anticipate that the mileage will steadily decrease. There has been a decrease of 300 miles, 200 miles of which was in connection with L.M. and S. canals. As I emphasised during the passage of the Transport Act, I am hoping that the Ports and Inland Waterways Executive will develop the canals to their fullest capacity.

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