§ Mr. Corbett
asked the Secretary of State for Transport for what reason traffic using the M1 northbound was required to leave the motorway at junction 5 on Monday 28 November from about 9.30 am causing a tailback almost to junction 4.
§ Mrs. Chalker
The two existing northbound lanes of the three-mile section of MI between junctions 5 and 6 were closed at 8.15 pm on Sunday 27 November to enable the adjacent new nearside lane and hardshoulder to be cleaned and final preparations made to bring all three lanes into use early the next day. Unfortunately, because of the breakdown on the contractor's three cleaning machines, including a standby, reopening had to be phased and was slightly delayed. The police also advised that, as a safety measure, northbound traffic on the motorway should be taken through junction 5 via the roundabout there, rather than along the main line of the motorway. I regret any inconvenience which this caused. The full reopening at 11.40 am marked the end of the main works of the M widening scheme and I am delighted that, as a result of the efforts of all concerned over the last three years, this much needed and difficult scheme has been completed on target.