Ernest Marples: The Shadow Behind Beeching

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Ernest Marples: The Shadow Behind Beeching

Ernest Marples: The Shadow Behind Beeching

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The value the Government placed on the British motor industry was highlighted by the tax breaks given to firms who bought cars for their employees as part of their pay package. The problem with conspiracy theories is that people believe what they want to believe, make the facts fit their argument and, in this case, the most critical are those who detest Marples brand of politics and/or are engaged in the age-old British love affair with trains. Marples would only be liable for capital gains tax at 30% on the transfer to Vin which, as an offshore company, would only be liable for stamp duty at 2%. For Buchanan, providing infrastructure for cyclists was unthinkable: “ … cyclists should not be admitted to primary networks, for obvious reasons of safety and the free flow of vehicular traffic. In 1956 Marples married his former secretary Ruth Dobson (1919–2014), who on his elevation to the peerage in 1974 became Lady Marples.

Civil engineer and planner Professor Colin Buchanan recommended that nothing be done at all to encourage urban cycling. This book gives quite a lot of Marples’ personal story but also goes into quite some depth on the background of the railways at this time. With the relatively empty A roads, and even emptier Motorways, I’m sure people would have paid to use them.For if such a conspiracy existed, it also involved Tom Fraser, Barbara Castle and Richard Marsh, as they authorised more rail closures than Marples did. In addition to this, tenants of his block of flats in Harwood Court, London, were demanding that he repair serious structural faults and had threatened legal action.

He opined: “On this magnificent road the speed which can easily be reached is so great that senses may be numbed and judgement warped. He had not done so by January 1960, at which time the Evening Standard reported that Marples Ridgway had won the tender to build the Hammersmith Flyover and that the Ministry of Transport's engineers had endorsed the London County Council's rejection of a lower tender. The reality was that most people with cars would do the whole journey driving rather than just going to the nearest big town to catch a train. You had Jeremy Corbyn stirring things up, but he was seen as very unlikely PM material and doomed to fail, t he did come close to winning the 2017 election.Early in 1975, he fled to Monaco, because of various legal actions and tax claims he faced, and he lived for the remainder of his life in France. The Transport Act 1962 dissolved the British Transport Commission (BTC) which had overseen the railways, canals and road freight transport and established the British Railways Board; it also put in place measures which simplified the process of closing railways. Five years ago Boris was Mayor of London and the likelihood was George Osborne would be PM by now, while Trump was more interested in reality television and his property empire. Ernest Marples’ tenure as Minister of Transport was a time when the British car transformed from functional but boring mechanical stodge to genuinely world-class and desirable models. A major problem of Britain’s railways was the lack of electrification, an awful lot of trains in 1973 ran on diesel so would be just as vulnerable as motor transport!

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