HC Deb 03 April 1973 vol 854 cc86-7W
Mr. MacArthur

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a statement on the outcome of his review of the financial position of the Erskine Bridge, having regard to the volume of traffic now using the bridge.

Mr. Gordon Campbell

During the second half of 1972, traffic crossing the Erskine Bridge increased by 12 per cent. on average, in comparison with the corresponding months of the previous year. This is an encouraging trend.

Although revenue from tolls remains below the level which would be required to repay the capital cost of the bridge, plus accumulated interest and other charges, within the 20-year period for which powers to collect tolls at present exist, the Government consider that their responsibilities under the Erskine Bridge Tolls Act 1968 will continue to be met by the fixing of tolls at levels which, while having full regard to the economic needs of the areas served by the bridge, are likely to yield the best result in terms of revenue. The Government will consider towards the end of the current toll period whether to seek powers to extend the period during which tolls are collected.