HC Deb 28 January 1959 vol 598 cc1064-5
37. Mr. Ernest Davies

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation how many meetings have been held by the London Travel Committee since its appointment; and what progress reports he has received from it.

Mr. Watkinson

The Committee has held two meetings. It has not yet made any formal reports, but the chairman has informed me that the Committee has made an assessment of the problem and is setting up four working groups to deal, respectively, with staggered working hours, road congestion, building development as affecting travel, and the feasibility of further railway construction.

Mr. Davies

We are grateful for the progress which has been made, but is the Minister fully satisfied that this large Committee of a very mixed bag of persons, both professional and amateur, is the best body to tackle this problem urgently? Would not it be better if he appointed small groups of engineers, including traffic engineers, to discuss the problems and work out improvements to solve them, especially in view of the great and tragic increase in accidents last month in London, which constituted a record?

Mr. Watkinson

I do not think so, for two reasons. One is that the Committee is rightly dividing itself up to deal with the enormous scope of the subject. As I think the hon. Gentleman agrees, one has to think of railways, roads and a great many other things. As to the technical side of it, of course, the Committee has the full resources of my Ministry at its call at any time.

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