HC Deb 18 March 1970 vol 798 cc368-9
7. Mr. Rankin

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how many miles of motorways and dual carriageways, respectively, were in operation in Scotland at the end of 1969; and how many are expected to be in use by the end of 1970.

Mr. Ross

Fifty-two miles of motorway and 142 miles of dual-carriageway all-purpose trunk roads were in use in Scotland at the end of 1969. By the end of 1970, providing contracts are completed on schedule, these figures should rise to 62 miles and 150 miles respectively.

Mr. Rankin

While the dual-carriageway position seems to be reasonable, as far as I can observe, am I right in thinking that we are lagging far behind with regard to motorways, particularly with the motorway between Glasgow and Edinburgh which is taking a very long time indeed, much longer than many of us had expected?

Mr. Ross

The reason why it has taken a long time is that it was a long time before it was started.

Mr. Younger

Will the right hon. Gentleman admit that there is great disquiet in Greenock and Gourock about his refusal to extend the M8 motorway to Greenock, as originally planned? Does he not think it necessary to extend this motorway in view of the importance of the container terminal?

Mr. Ross

The hon. Gentleman is wrong about two things. He is overestimating the disquiet. He talked about "as originally planned." That is quite wrong, and if he goes back to a document produced by his own Party when they formed the Government in 1963, he will find that it was a motorway and all-purpose dual carriageway.