Sir, The present trend of persecuting the motorist has advanced still further. Not content with raising road tax, raising fuel tax, instituting traffic wardens and parking meters, bringing in the ill-organised ten-year-test system, and generally imposing more restrictions, the Government has seen fit to introduce legislation
whereby a motorist may be stopped at any time and told to drive to a ” mobile testing station,” where his car will be examined. It is probably true that the average motorist has little to fear from these stations. However, judging by the tremendously variable standards of ten-year tests, one can visualise cases of unfair penalisation. Apart from this consideration is the depressing inconvenience of being waved down and finding time to drive to the station. Most motorists spend much time as it is on car maintenance without having to indulge in these needless excursions. However, I suspect that to the average driver, the worst aspect of the whole affair will be the indignity of being waved down, etc. The knowledge of being in the grip of further bureaucratic red tape is scarcely good for the morale.
I am a member of the Automobile Association, and have reason to be thankful for their services. Generally speaking I think it is well Worth the membership fee for any motorist to join. However, in my present mood of frustration I can’t help remembering that the A.A. was originally formed to combat officialdom in the form of speed traps. I suggest that instead of trying to coin a term embracing all mechanised road-users, where ” motorist ” suffices anyway, the A.A. puts some thought into recalling their pioneer spirit. A start could be made in connection with this latest pieee of legislation. I do not object to being waved down by an A.A. patrolman wishing to tell me that if I continue along the same road there is a danger of being stopped in order to take a test. Nor should I object to the inconvenience of making a detour. I should be too suffused with the egotistical satisfaction of poking officialdom in the eye, to worry.
Rickmansworth. R. G. II. MARSH. •