HC Deb 22 March 1961 vol 637 cc378-9
28. Mr. Lipton

asked the Minister of Transport what action he is taking to deal with the inconvenience caused to many local residents by the all-night parking of heavy goods vehicles in residential areas of London.

Mr. Marples

The primary difficulty is the absence so far of sufficient off-street parking accommodation. I am in touch with the Metropolitan boroughs, and other bodies concerned, about this and other aspects of the problem.

Mr. Lipton

This is not good enough. Is the Minister not aware that with these great ten-ton and twenty-ton diesel lorries starting up every morning at 4 o'clock it is just like hell let loose in some of the residential streets of Brixton and other parts of London? Has not the time come for him to take some drastic action, because the law on the subject is absolutely inadequate?

Mr. Marples

If the hon. Gentleman will send me details of the streets involved, I will communicate with the Lambeth Borough Council, which is the parking authority for the area under the Road Traffic and Roads Improvement Act, 1960.

Mr. Mellish

Surely the right hon. Gentleman will be aware that in London there is a very severe problem and that details have already been sent by a number of borough councils to the Home Office and to his Ministry? Surely it is a fair point to say that the law on the subject seems to be rather difficult. Will he seriously examine what can be done to prevent private citizens from having to lose a great deal of their rest at night because of this shocking nuisance?

Mr. Marples

There are two aspects of this question—the traffic amenity aspect and the aspect of annoyance to residents. The permanent solution is off-street parking, which is primarily the responsibility of the Metropolitan boroughs, and in that I will help all I can. With that, one can get adequate enforcement by the police. There is difficulty about enforcement by the police when there is no other place where the trucks and heavy lorries can go. If the hon. Gentleman will send me details of the situation in Brixton—I have already had some details from Bermondsey—I will go into the matter with the authorities.

Mr. Manuel

Is there not another aspect? Does not the right hon. Gentleman think that private enterprise is providing quite insufficient garage accommodation and is using public thoroughfares for all-night parking of these vehicles when it should provide garage facilities at its own expense, as is common place with private road users?

Mr. Marples

I think that in most cases the vehicle owners should find their own parking places. Whatever happens, a local authority might also provide parking places in its area and the private owners should pay for them.