HC Deb 14 February 1973 vol 850 c1282
32. Mr. David James

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will mark tree-planting year by planting Australian gum trees in the central reservation area of motorways.

Mr. Peyton

There is insufficient space to accommodate large trees in the central reservation of motorways, but my Department will be carrying out extensive roadside planting in 1973.

Mr. James

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, contrary to what some hon. Gentlemen opposite may have thought, this is not a zany question? Is he aware that these trees grow extremely well in this country, that they are slender, and excellent windbreaks, and that as they do not shed their leaves they are an admirable defence against glare yet do not produce a skidding hazard? Is he further aware that they would bring about a considerable beautification of the country?

Mr. Peyton

I can assure my hon. Friend that it would never for one moment occur to me to suspect that he was asking a zany question.

Mr. David Steel

Has the right hon. Gentleman considered the safety effects of growing shrubbery on the central reservations of motorways, as is done on the Continent?

Mr. Peyton

I have considered it. I have frequently been invited to consider almost every conceivable form of barrier. On the whole, I am of the opinion that the one we are using generally is best.

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