§ Mr. I. Thomas
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport what considerations led him to propose driving through the middle of Hereford a road, described as an internal by-pass road, which by its proximity to the existing bridge will impair the view of the river and cathedral, will necessitate filling in the ancient ditch, will threaten the ancient city wall and will not divert traffic from the middle of the city; whether the views of the Royal Fine Art Commission have been sought on the artistic aspects of the proposal; and whether consideration will be given to a local proposal that the road should follow the line of the railway, crossing the river Wye at a higher point and thus providing at much less expense a real by-pass.
§ Mr. Noel-Baker
The existing trunk road through the city of Hereford is narrow and congested, and it cannot be widened. There is comparatively little through traffic, and a by-pass road outside the city would not, therefore, meet the need. For this reason, the County Highways Committee and the Town Council are considering an alternative route immediately outside the city wall, with a new bridge over the River Wye. I am assured that this plan would not spoil the views of the river or of the cathedral, and that it would open up a better view of the city wall structure. The Committee and the Council also hope to preserve a portion of the ancient ditch. The scheme is still in a preliminary stage, and the advice of the Royal Fine Art Commission will be obtained before it is adopted. The authorities also considered another route parallel and adjacent to the railway, but it was found to be unsuitable for the traffic to be carried