HC Deb 04 November 1959 vol 612 cc49-50W
Vice-Admiral Hughes Hallett

asked the Minister of Transport what consultations took place between his Department and the Royal Fine Art Commission about the design of the new Staines Bridge.

Mr. Marples

I am glad to have the opportunity of clearing up what may be a misapprehension in this matter. The original design for the Bell Weir Bridge was approved by the Royal Fine Art Commission in 1940. In the summer of 1957 when the bridge was again put into the road programme there was oral consultation between the Ministry's representative in these matters and his normal contact in the Commission as to whether the Commission should be consulted formally again about the bridge, it being the intention of the Ministry that the structure should be redesigned without altering the elevation. The Ministry understood that the Commission did not wish to be consulted again. I am sorry that there should have been any misunderstanding, and steps have been taken to avoid any such misunderstandings in future.

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