Between May 1979 and January 1983 the number of unemployed claimants in Wales increased by 103,487. In the Shotton travel-to-work area and Clwyd between May 1979 and October 1982 the number of registered unemployed increased by 5,837 and 13,779 respectively; between October 1982, when the new basis was introduced, and January 1983 the number of unemployed claimants increased by 360 and 1,584.
Will the right hon. Gentleman do his utmost to speed up the tactical and strategic road improvements that are required in my constituency to hasten industrial regeneration? Does he know that the Plough Lane district distributor road is unlikely to be started until late in the 1980s? In a strategic sense, what help will he give to Clwyd county council to bring about the third crossing of the River Dee, which will give a major boost to industrial estates in Flint and on Deeside?
I agree about the importance of the proposals for a third Dee crossing. I discussed the report of the Clwyd county council and the Alyn and Deeside district council at an interesting and useful meeting on 19 January. They agreed that it was necessary to provide much more detailed information about the proposals, and discussions will continue on that basis.