Motor Tricycles (Personal Case)

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 31st January 1966.

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Photo of Mr Leslie Spriggs Mr Leslie Spriggs , St Helens 12:00 am, 31st January 1966

asked the Minister of Health why his Department decided not to issue a further motor-tricycle to Mr. Peter Penketh of St. Helens; and if he is satisfied that the action taken is justified in the special circumstances.

Photo of Mr Charles Loughlin Mr Charles Loughlin , Gloucestershire West

Mr. Penketh has had the use of eight tricycles in the last three years; all have been damaged or neglected. I regret that my right hon. Friend cannot agree to issue another one.

Photo of Mr Leslie Spriggs Mr Leslie Spriggs , St Helens

Is my hon. Friend aware that his Department has deprived a young man who can hardly use his legs to get to and from work of an invalid machine which is the only means by which he can do the journey with any comfort at all? Is my hon. Friend further aware that by taking away this machine he and his Department have deprived this young man of his only pleasure in life? Will my hon. Friend look at this again in view of the fact that a lot of these old machines to which he refers are in a dilapidated condition when they are sent out to invalids? Will he not close this case at this juncture, and will he look at this again? I shall give him all the assistance that I can to help to bring light back to this young man's life.

Photo of Mr Charles Loughlin Mr Charles Loughlin , Gloucestershire West

I should very much like to do what my hon. Friend asks, but I assure the House that this decision was not taken lightly. The machines which this man had were not old ones. In fact two of the tricycles—one of which was only a year old—were so badly damaged that they had to be scrapped, and he had six other vehicles. We have incurred a lot of heavy cost in this. Although this machine was withdrawn in July, this young man has not lost any time at all away from work. It is a case which I much regret, but I am afraid that we cannot possibly think of issuing him with another tricycle.