HC Deb 09 November 1955 vol 545 cc1841-2
38. Mr. Gresham Cooke

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation when the construction work on the Cromwell Road extension was started; what percentage of the work has already been done; and when he hopes that the whole scheme will be completed.

62. Mr. K. Robinson

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation why the Cromwell Road extension will not be completed until 1959; and to what extent the limitations are financial or constructional.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Construction work started in April this year. On a cost basis about 5 per cent. of the work has been done. I cannot at present give a precise date for completion of the whole scheme, sections of which will be brought into use separately as soon as they are ready.

Mr. Gresham Cooke

While congratulating my right hon. Friend very heartily on starting this road, may I ask him to keep an eye on its progress so that it is not held up by administrative difficulties, particularly having regard to the fact that it is the gateway to such important centres as Southampton, London Airport and Twickenham?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

I agree with my hon. Friend that for all those reasons this is a very important road, and that is why I am glad that we have been able to make a start on it.

Mr. Robinson

Can the right hon. Gentleman deny the statement that this extension is not to be finished for four years—until 1959? Does not he think that with the enormous advances made in road construction machinery since before the war, that is far too long a time, and would not the interests of economy be served by hastening this work?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

I said in my original answer that I was not prepared to give a precise date for completion. The reason is that on one section of this road it is necessary to remove part of a school, and until alternative accommodation for the school can be found, it is not possible for constructional work to be done on that section of the road.