§ Mr. David Steel
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) if he will list all those organisations which have made representations to his Department opposing the plans submitted by the Scottish Development Department to demolish the Carlops bridge over the A702 trunk road; and if he will make a statement;
(2) if, in view of the existing structural condition of the A702 road bridge at Carlops and the volume of heavy 206W goods vehicles which use it, he will consider constructing a bypass to the village of Carlops; and if he will make a statement;
(3) how many schemes designed to restore and repair the A702 road bridge at Carlops have been submitted; if he will give the estimated cost of each of these; and if he will make a statement;
(4)if he will give an assurance that, in considering the various schemes that have been submitted to repair the A702 road bridge at Carlops, he will take full account both of environmental factors and other objections that have been raised by the local communities; and if he will make a statement;
(5)what studies have been made on the extent to which the construction of a bypass to the A702 at Carlops would avoid the need to demolish the Carlops bridge; what is his estimate of the cost of constructing such a bypass; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Younger
Borders regional council, as local planning authority, has advertised my Department's proposals for repair works involving the partial demolition of and alterations to Carlops Bridge, which is an unlisted structure within a conservation area. The following organisations have made representations either directly or through the planning authority—the Carlops community council, the Scottish Civic Trust, the Scottish Georgian Society, the Countryside Commission for Scotland, and the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland. The regional authority, as my agent for the trunk road, has proposed alternative schemes for repairing the bridge ranging in price from £750,000 to £103,730; the advertised proposal is the cheapest. There are no plans at present for a bypass of Carlops, and while no detailed studies have been carried out, it is clear that the provision of a bypass—estimated cost £75,000—would not obviate the need for repair work to the bridge soon. The various alternatives are now under consideration and account will be taken of all the representations received.