§ 2.37 p.m.
§ [The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will consider putting the Wilmsow— Altrincham road, A.538, in a tunnel under the proposed extension of the runway at Manchester Ringway airport, in view of the fact that it is reported that the cost will be comparable with that of diverting the road, will avoid adding appreciably to the distance travelled by road traffic, and will permit a possible extension of the runway up to 10,000 feet in length.]1238
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE DUCHY OF LANCASTER (THE EARL OF SELKIRK)
My Lords, recent estimates indicate that it would cost about £200,000 more to put that section of the Wilmslow—Altrincham road, A.538, which will be affected by an extended runway at Manchester, into a tunnel, compared with the diversionary road agreed by the Corporation and my right honourable friend the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation. Her Majesty's Government are not heavy extra cost would be justified.
§ LORD DERWENT
My Lords, while thanking the noble Earl for his reply, may I ask him the distance of the diversionary road and whether, if at some later date the runway again has to be extended, a second diversionary road will have to be built?
§ THE EARL OF SELKIRK
My Lords, I very much regret that I have not available at this moment the distance of the diversionary road. I will certainly secure it for the noble Lord and let him know in due course. In regard to the second part of the noble Lord's supplementary question, I am not quite certain whether any further diversion of the road is possible. I think that, as the noble Lord is aware, the diversionary road will be along the edge of a deep gorge where the river Bollin runs. I think it is extremely improbable that any runway could be extended beyond that point.