HC Deb 23 July 1958 vol 592 cc407-8
36. Mr. Gresham Cooke

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether, in view of the fact that the present scale of charges for parking meters, whilst it may be suitable for motorists visiting the central area of London for shopping and pleasure, is ill adapted to the essential requirements of professional persons such as doctors and business men, who may be unavoidably detained with their patients or clients for more than two hours, he will give consideration to a scheme by which such persons may, by payment of an additiontl annual amount in respect of the licence charge for their cars, be given somewhat improved facilities in parking meter areas.

Mr. Nugent

The charges that may be made for vehicles left in a parking place designated under the Road Traffic Act, 1956, are governed by Section 20 of that Act. The Act makes no provision for any form of annual payment such as that suggested by my hon. Friend.

Mr. Gresham Cooke

If parking meters are to be extended over a wide area of London, will my hon. Friend bear this in mind as a useful possible scheme to meet the needs of business men and commercial travellers?

Mr. Nugent

I think I have made plain to my hon. Friend that in order to do what he requires Parliament would need to pass fresh legislation.

Mr. Ernest Davies

Is the hon. Gentleman aware of the difficulty which will arise when a motorist has put 6d. in a meter in order to leave his car for a certain length of time, but after that time cannot put in another 6d.? He has to decide at the beginning to pay for one hour or two hours' parking. Surely it would be reasonable to allow the motorist to put in the second 6d. so that if he decides to leave his car for two hours he can do so?

Mr. Nugent

I sympathise with the point made by the hon. Member. The difficulty is that feeding-in, as a general procedure, is illegal. If we made it legal, it would enable anyone to leave a car by a parking meter and return every hour or two hours to put in further coins. To allow that concession would make the enforcement of the feeding-in provision in-operable, and I am afraid we cannot make the concession.

Mr. Langford-Holt

Can my hon. Friend say if any preparations are now in hand for making sure that the money obtained, as decided by Parliament, when available will be immediately put in use for providing off-street parking?

Mr. Nugent

Parliament has provided that funds from this source shall go to that purpose.