HC Deb 28 January 1980 vol 977 cc529-30W
Mr. Alton

asked the Minister of Transport whether, in the light of Government policy to reduce public expenditure, a toll system has been considered for the motorway and trunk road network to help cover these roads' maintenance costs.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke

It has been considered.

It would be difficult to install toll booths and waiting lanes on roads not designed for them. More land would need to be acquired and major and expensive re-design work would be necessary on the heavily trafficked roads if unacceptable queuing and delays were to be avoided. There is also a danger that some traffic would divert from the tolled roads on to less suitable roads through local communities and that would be contrary to our policy of moving heavier traffic out of towns and villages wherever practicable. The proposal does not therefore seem feasible at the moment, but studies are continuing.