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Dr. Ladyman: Extensive research on the skid resistance of road surfacings over the last ten years has included measurements of both stone mastic asphalt and hot rolled asphalt. This has shown that provided the appropriate aggregate is used and the surface texture is adequate, the skid resistance of stone mastic asphalt falls within the expected range for typical hot rolled asphalt surfacing.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment has been made of whether there has been a change in the incidence of accidents involving pedestrians on crossings where shellgrip is no longer used. 
There have been no studies of accidents involving pedestrians in situations where shellgrip was once used and either not been replaced or where it has been replaced with a high friction surfacing of a different type.
14 Feb 2006 : Column 1882W
Dr. Ladyman: The Secretary of State has had no discussions with the Highways Agency on the A49 Dorrington bypass (near Shrewsbury) since the scheme was withdrawn from the Trunk Roads Programme in 1994.
Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will meet the Highways Agency to discuss the merits of a pedestrian crossing in the village of Westbury near Shrewsbury; 
Dr. Ladyman: As Westbury is not situated on the trunk road network, responsibility for the management of the road through the village rests with Shropshire county council as local highway authority, rather than the Highways Agency. The hon. Member should approach the county council about these issues.
Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much was spent on road (a) improvements and (b) modernisation in Shrewsbury and Atcham constituency in (i) 1997, (ii) 1999 and (iii) 2005. 
Dr. Ladyman: The information summarised in the following table has been supplied from Shropshire county council. It summarises the county council's expenditure on highways and transport infrastructure in the Shrewsbury and Atcham district in the three financial years most closely corresponding to 1997, 1999 and 2005.
|199798 (actual)||19992000 (actual)||200506 (budget)|
|Integrated Transport improvements and Local Safety Schemes||909||932||1,329|
|Battlefield Link Road||584||0||0|
|Sub total (Improvements)||1,493||932||1,329|
|Structural Maintenance of Roads||1,422||1,812||2,710|
|Routine Maintenance of Roads||434||502||642|
Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will meet representatives of Shrewsbury Friends of the Earth to discuss the proposal to build a north west relief road on the outskirts of Shrewsbury. 
Dr. Ladyman: We have not received any detailed proposal from Shropshire county council for a relief road to the North West of Shrewsbury. I will consider written representations from stakeholders should I receive such a proposal.
Dr. Ladyman: The Highways Agency, which has responsibility for the A5 and A49 Trunk Roads, is fully aware of the difficulties at the Dobbies roundabout. An investigation currently being carried out is designed to identify measures to improve the operation of the roundabout, including any that would reduce traffic speeds. The results are due within the next two to three months.
Ms Buck [holding answer 13 February 2006]: The Secretary of State has powers under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to authorise the permanent stopping up of a highway in England outside London to enable development to take place or to improve safety and/or traffic flow if it crosses or enters the route of a new or improved highway. In London, these powers are exercised by the London boroughs.
The Secretary of State also has power under the Highways Act 1980 to permanently stop up a highway if he considers it necessary as part of the construction or improvement of a trunk road or a classified road.
Guidance on setting local speed limits, including those on rural roads, is currently contained in Circular Roads 1/93. The Department has consulted on draft updated guidance and this will be published shortly.
14 Feb 2006 : Column 1884W
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much has been spent on subsidies for (a) rail and (b) bus travel in the Peterborough city council area in each of the last five years. 
Ms Buck: Subsidies for the rail network are paid to Network Rail and to the various franchises which operate in a number of regions and cities. The Department does not collect figures showing rail subsidy to individual cities.
Individual local authorities are responsible for their own decisions on spending on support for local bus services in their area. The majority of this expenditure is provided by local authorities from their revenue support grant allocations. Expenditure by Peterborough city council on support of bus services in each of the last five years is shown in the following table:
|Bus subsidy (£000)|
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