§ 67. Mr. David Adams
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport whether he is aware that long-distance trains are leaving King's Cross with men, women and children passengers standing in the corridors for long periods, whilst first-class compartments are seating only six persons each; and whether, to remedy these hardships, he will give instructions that seating shall in future be not less than eight persons per compartment when required?
§ The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport (Mr. Noel-Baker)
I share my hon. Friend's anxiety that the passengers on the long-distance trains to which he refers shall be spared all avoidable discomfort. I understand, however, that the seating accommodation in these trains, both in first and third-class compartments, is already being used to its full capacity. In some first-class compartments the fixed projecting arm-rests make it impracticable to seat more than six persons. But the train attendants have been instructed that where first-class compartments can seat eight passengers in reasonable comfort, this additional accommodation must be used.
§ Mr. Noel-Baker
Instructions were in fact given some time ago. If my hon. Friend will give me particulars of any case he has in mind, I will make inquiries.
§ Sir Granville Gibson
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that if I travel to Yorkshire this afternoon, I must be at the station at least half-an-hour before the train starts?
§ Mr. Noel-Baker
I know that pressure on the trains is very great, and I regret it, but it is an unavoidable necessity.
Is the meaning of the regulation that, if there is an arm rest which can be raised, the train officers have a right to insist that it shall be raised?