Underground (Service Changes)

Oral Answers to Questions — Railways – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 28 January 1959.

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Photo of Mr Ernest Davies Mr Ernest Davies , Enfield East 12:00, 28 January 1959

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation if he will request the London Transport Users' Consultative Committee to inquire into the reasons for the changes in scheduled services on London Transport which led to recent refusals of passengers to leave certain Underground trains.

Photo of Mr Albert Cooper Mr Albert Cooper , Ilford South

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what discussions he proposes to have with the London Transport Users' Consultative Committee following recent sit-in strikes on certain London Underground trains.

Photo of Mr Harold Watkinson Mr Harold Watkinson , Woking

I would refer the hon. Member and my hon. Friend to the Answer which I gave the hon. Member for Dagenham (Mr. Parker) on 21st January. There is nothing more I can say at this stage.

Photo of Mr Ernest Davies Mr Ernest Davies , Enfield East

I have seen that Answer, which indicates that London Transport has been asked to keep the Minister informed of the position. Does the Minister really think that most passengers, when de-trained through uncoupling, are satisfied to know that he is looking into the matter? Does not he think that this independent committee which the consultative machinery provides would be more suitable to inquire into the grievances of London passengers to see whether they are justified, especially in view of the inconvenience caused to other people when some passengers take direct action on their own part?

Photo of Mr Harold Watkinson Mr Harold Watkinson , Woking

Let me make the position clear. London Transport has said plainly that is recognises its responsibilities in this matter, and it is trying to put matters right. I think that it is only fair to give London Transport a chance to do that, but I am watching the position in the interests of the travelling public—that is one of my duties—and I shall see how things work out. We must, however, give London Transport the chance to put things right on its own account. If it cannot, I do not rule out other possibilities.