HC Deb 24 June 1974 vol 875 cc970-1
10. Mr. Tom Ellis

asked the Secretary of State for Wales how many public participation exercises he has started in relation to the new roadway proposals.

Mr. Barry Jones

Eight public participation exercises have been held and more are planned.

Mr. Ellis

Is my hon. Friend aware that the electors of my constituency welcome this development? May I ask my hon. Friend three questions? First, will he in due course, after gaining experience in the exercise, publish an assessment of it, taking into account any suggestions or criticisms made by the public? Secondly, if in the event there happens to be substantial public agreement favouring one of a number of alternative routes, will that be decisive in the acceptance of the route? Thirdly, what does my hon. Friend propose if the public in a particular area overwhelmingly reject all his alternative route proposals?

Mr. Jones

I followed with interest the statesmanlike policy of my hon. Friend in his constituency on particular participation matters. In view of the detailed questions that he has asked, perhaps he will allow me to write to him after considering them. I believe that this exercise in participation has proved valuable to the Welsh Office and, I think, to members of the public.

Mr. Peter Thomas

In order to get the record straight, will the hon. Gentleman confirm that this new procedure for pre-order consultation was introduced in 1973?

Mr. Jones

The record is straight on this matter.