HC Deb 10 February 1954 vol 523 cc1164-5
29 and 30. Lord Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation (1) whether he will take steps to improve the conditions on the Fort William—Mallaig trunk road A.830;

(2) whether, in order to meet the needs of the district, he will increase the restriction of vehicles on the Fort William—Mallaig trunk road A.830 from six tons to eight tons.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

As my noble Friend knows, a good deal of work has been done on this road to make it fit for heavier vehicles, but to bring it to the desired standard would cost over £½ million, and I am sorry that, having regard to other claims throughout the country, I am unlikely to be able to authorise this in the near future. Meanwhile I regret that I cannot raise the limit beyond six tons.

Lord Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton

Is my right hon. Friend aware that after the war this road and the bridges on it very happily bore the weight of eight-ton lorries without any trouble at all? Is he further aware that this road is positively the worst trunk road that Britain owns, and is it not about time that this highway was improved so that it merited the name "trunk road"?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I hope to live to see that happen.

Mr. Woodburn

Would the right hon. Gentleman ask all Members to visit this road themselves—it is reputed to be the loveliest road in the world—and then they will be able to bring pressure to bear on the right hon. Gentleman?

Mr. Manuel

Is the Minister aware that sections of this road between Fort William and Mallaig are in a worse condition than many private roads leading into crofts? Will he look at this question again, because undoubtedly the road carries a volume of holiday tourist traffic and there should be better facilities than there are at present?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I will go there myself shortly.

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