My right hon. Friend has no plans to visit mid-Staffordshire at present. But I shall be in the west midlands on 16 December listening to the views of all the local authorities on traffic problems in their areas.
My hon. Friend has pressed clearly on me the need for a bypass in Stone. I well understand his argument. We shall make an announcement shortly on our backing for local authority schemes in the coming year. I can assure my hon. Friend that I shall listen carefully to the clear expression of his constituents' views.
I understand the need for a bypass in Rugeley. Our bypass programme is substantial. The Government have included 130 bypasses in the present programme, and there are dozens more bypasses in the local roads programme. So my hon. Friend speaks for many other constituents besides his own.
Does the Minister accept that the problems of mid-Staffordshire are replicated throughout much of the midlands and the north-west of England because people are switching from rail travel to roads as a result of the poor quality of service on the west coast main line? Is it not essential to get the new rolling stock for the west coast main line as quickly as possible? Would not investment in railways be much better than putting one or two extra bypasses here and there, because investment in the railways would help the whole country?
The hon. Gentleman's question is far from the subject of this question. We have a balanced programme with a substantial investment in railways. The hon. Member would do well if he could press the claims of his constituents as well as my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Staffordshire (Mr. Fabricant) presses for his.