HC Deb 20 December 1967 vol 756 c1240
3. Sir E. Errington

asked the Minister of Transport whether, in view of the fact that the new licensing authority will adjudicate between journeys by road or rail when one or the other is quicker, she will seek to provide that this authority will also be allowed to adjudicate in respect of British waterways where journeys by barge are quicker, more reliable and cheaper than by British Railways.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport (Mr. John Morris)

No, Sir. We do not consider there is any need for legislative control over consignors' choice between rail and inland waterways transport.

Sir E. Errington

Cannot the hon. Gentleman give some indication why it is not considered important that a licensing authority should have power to deal with waterways?

Mr. Morris

The Government are not anxious to extend licensing for the sake of licensing. It is enough to concentrate on the major carriers of inland freight. What we are doing is giving every encouragement to the development of waterways where this is economically sensible.