By Alexander Raven Thomson
Published in 1937 this booklet proposes a motorway system for Britain which was then well in advance of contemporary thinking. The major routes that were regarded as essential are described, and many of them have now been built. The three lane system, as used in most cases today, was proposed as well as the methods of entry and exit from motorways. When first published this booklet would have been considered quite radical.
The taxation of motorists, still in use today, is described as “an infamous imposition” and the author says that the fairest way of raising tax for roads would be through tax of fuel, as this is based on road usage. He describes the situation existing then, and gives figures to show that between 30-40% of the revenue raised from road tax was actually being spent on the roads.
Another aspect that the author discusses is the problem of acquiring land for the building of roads, compensation and land speculation.
Certainly, a great deal of work needed to be done in 1937, and it took until the 1960s before some of these proposals were implemented.
Few will disagree that the the sooner the road tax situation is revised the better.