HC Deb 03 February 1969 vol 777 cc25-6
35. Mr. Molloy

asked the Minister of Transport if he will initiate a conference of representatives in the Greater London area of industry, commerce, trade unions, and London Transport, in an endeavour to bring about staggered working hours as a contribution towards rationalising the use of public transport to the advantage of London's travelling public.

Mr. Marsh

Experience has shown that the peak hour congestion problem is best tackled on a local rather than on a citywide basis. Local transport groups are already working with London Transport, which takes the initiative in advising employers on the most favourable times for starting and stopping work in their locality. The scope for further reduction of peak congestion by agreement is limited, but I am considering what more can be done.

Mr. Molloy

I am grateful for that reply, but will my right hon. Friend ensure that this aspect of his policy is given the urgency it requires so that we may do away with the madness of the crush-and-rush hour in London and bring some sanity into the use of our public transport?

Mr. Marsh

Certainly, Sir.

Captain W. Elliot

Does not the right hon. Gentleman appreciate that we have tried to stagger hours for years, and the effort has failed? When will the transport authorities recognise that we have these rush hours and they must cope with them?

Mr. Marsh

It is interesting that the hon. and gallant Gentleman says that. I asked for a note on this subject, and the first sentence reads: "The question of staggering working hours to reduce peak hour congestion has been studied on and off for about 50 years".