§ 16 and 17. Mr. C. Johnson
asked the Minister of Transport (1) how many public footpaths and bridleways were extinguished in the construction of the Birmingham motorway M.1;
(2) how many public footpaths and bridleways were diverted in the construction of the Birmingham motorway M.1.
§ The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport (Mr. John Hay)
Ninety-six footpaths and twenty-seven bridleways were diverted for part of their length. Only three footpaths were wholly stopped up, but another convenient route was provided in each case.
§ Mr. Johnson
I thank the hon. Gentleman for that reply. Since other motorways are projected, will he give an assurance that special care will be taken to see that those motorways do not prevent the use of cross-country footpaths, as the cost involved is very small relative to the total cost of motorways as a whole?
§ Mr. Hay
Yes, Sir. The Special Roads Act, 1949, under which motorways are built, lays down the procedure for dealing with footpaths and bridleways. Quite shortly, the stopping up or diversion of those routes can be done only by order of the Minister, after full opportunity for objection has been afforded followed by a public inquiry, if necessary. Our experience with the M.1 indicates that that is sufficient safeguard.