§ 20. Mr. McKay
asked the Minister of Transport if he is aware of the dangerous conditions in the High Street, Gosforth, for pedestrians and general traffic; and what discussions he has had with Gosforth District Council or the Northumberland County Council on the question of additional road signs to effect a greater slowing down of traffic approaching Gosforth High Street.
§ Mr. Hay
Traffic approaching the High Street, Gosforth, could best be slowed down by erecting a 30 m.p.h. sign at its entry. This cannot legally be done because the High Street is part of a longer stretch of road which is at present all subject to the 30 m.p.h. limit. We are in touch with the Newcastle City Council to see whether a length of road immediately to the south of Gosforth should be subject to a 40 m.p.h. limit. If this were done a 30 m.p.h. sign could be placed at the entry to the High Street.
§ Mr. Hay
We are certainly in the closest touch with the local authorities in the whole of this area. I am advised that the county development plan does not provide for any local by-pass at Gosforth. As far as the long-term situation is concerned, as I said in my answer we think this will be largely helped when the Gateshead-Newcastle western by-pass is built.
§ Dame Irene Ward
In view of the fact that I live in Gosforth and have several times been nearly killed in the Gosforth High Street, may I ask my hon. Friend if he will kindly point out to everybody concerned that we have been arguing about this for many months, almost years, and that it is about time something happened?
§ Mr. Hay
I think we all feel that Gosforth is extremely lucky to have my hon. Friend living in that part of the country. As to consultation, as I said answer to the hon. Member for Wall-send (Mr. McKay), we are in the closest touch with the local authorities concerned, and I hope that we can get something done about Gosforth High Street by this proposal for a 40 m.p.h. limit.
§ Mr. Popplewell
Will the Joint Parliamentary Secretary say when he hopes to give some indication of the commencement of the western by-pass? As a temporary measure, could he indicate when he hopes to be able to give a date for the completion of the new Scotswood bridge, which will have a bearing on this trafflc problem?