Mr. S. James A. Hill
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many miles of inland waterways in the United Kingdom are used for commercial transport purposes; what studies have been undertaken in this field; and if he will direct the Waterways Board to increase the total usable mileage of such waterways.
§ Mr. Eldon Griffiths
Apart from the Manchester Ship Canal and the lower reaches of certain rivers subject to port authority control, there are 340 miles of the British Waterways Board's "commercial" waterways on which freight is carried. Any development of a waterway for freight carrying would need to be economically and socially justified.