HC Deb 16 December 1970 vol 808 cc1324-5
8. Mr. Fox

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what action he has taken, having regard to the provision of Section 135(2) of the Road Traffic Act, 1960, to ensure that, in considering an application for a road service licence, the Traffic Commissioners will take full account of the failure of existing licence holders for similar services to provide the services required by the public; and if he will review the law relating to road service licences to give greater emphasis to the needs of the user rather than established operators.

Mr. Eldon Griffiths

The answer to the first part of the question is that the traffic commissioners do take account of any failure on the part of existing licence holders. On the second part, we are already reviewing the licensing system generally.

Mr. Fox

I am grateful to my hon. Friend for that reply. Will he bear in mind that the failure of an operator to give an adequate service under licence not only effectively and permanently kills demand but is more than likely to result in the loss of a substantial number of passengers to the industry?

Mr. Griffiths

I am aware that the bus industry has problems. My right hon. Friend's review will take these matters into account, because we are anxious to ensure that this system is suitable for present-day needs.