§ 25. Mr. William Shepherd
asked the Minister of Transport what alterations in the no standing rules have been secured by his Department to meet the transport difficulties of the present time.
§ 34. Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
asked the Minister of Transport whether he has now considered the present restriction on standing in buses in the light of experience of the effect of the abolition of basic petrol; and what action he proposes to take.
§ The Minister of Transport (Mr. Barnes)
I understand that I may shortly receive an application from the London Transport Executive and the Transport and General Workers' Union for a relaxation of the existing requirements, so as to permit the number of standing passengers in public road vehicles to be increased from five to eight during peak hours. I hope soon to be in a position to make a statement.
§ Mr. Shepherd
Will the Minister say what active part he has taken in endeavouring to reach this result, and is it not the duty of the Minister to get this regulation altered as quickly as possible?
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
In view of the variations in the times of peak periods in different areas, is the right hon. Gentleman also considering permitting some standing in what are crowded though not technically peak periods?
§ Mr. W. R. Williams
Does not the Minister consider there is a case for differentiating between town and country services, having regard to the infrequent services in the country, and the manner in which large numbers of people are left at the point of departure almost every day?
§ Mr. Marlowe
How did the right hon. Gentleman get this information? Does it mean that he has now established communication with the Transport Commission?
§ 41. Mr. Keeling
asked the Minister of Transport whether he is aware that evidence was given for the London Transport Executive in a recent police court case that a bus conductor has the right to refuse to carry a passenger if he thinks 12 the bus is full, even if it be not; and whether he proposes to make any regulation requiring a conductor who turns a passenger off a bus to satisfy himself first that it is full.
§ Mr. Barnes
It is an offence under the regulations for a passenger to remain on a bus when requested not to do so by the conductor on the ground that the vehicle is carrying its full complement of passengers. I am advised that a court would not be likely to convict unless the conductor had reasonable grounds for believing the vehicle to be full. In the case to which the hon. Member refers, evidence was given that the bus was full. The answer to the last part of the Question is in the negative.
§ Mr. Keeling
Has the Minister heard the story, which, possibly, is slightly exaggerated, of the conductress who, on being asked if there was any room on top, replied, "I have no idea. I have not been up for a week"?