HC Deb 14 July 1954 vol 530 cc457-8
42. Mr. Willey

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what steps he is taking to bring to the knowledge of highway authorities the results of the researches of the Road Research Laboratory of the Department of Scentific and Industrial Research.

Mr. Molson

The Road Research Laboratory itself, with the encouragement of my Department, takes steps to bring the results of its researches to the knowledge of highway authorities. Our engineers are also in constant touch with the engineers of highway authorities and make it their business to pass on such information to them. An exhibition was held at my suggestion at the Materials and Construction Division of the Road Research Laboratory at Harmondsworth on the 5th, 6th and 7th May at which many chairmen of Highway Authorities and surveyors were able to see demonstrations of new methods.

Mr. Willey

While I am encouraged by that reply, may I ask the hon. Member whether he appreciates that this research is very valuable and that a small expenditure on it can lead to great economies in road construction? Will he endeavour to pursue the recommendation of the Select Committee and see that this research is encouraged as far as possible?

Mr. Molson

Yes, Sir. Certainly.

Mr. Mikardo

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the services which the Road Research Laboratory can give to highway authorities are being limited by the cut in the real value of the grant to the D.S.I.R. which has been imposed since this Government came into office? What is he doing about that?

Mr. Molson

The grant available to the D.S.I.R. is not the responsibility of my right hon. Friend.