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GOVERNMENT amendlent to the Transport Bill that rould have given British Rail re right to enter the hire and .ward sector of the industry as been withdrawn.
Transport Under Secretary )hn Horam asked Standing ommittee B of the House of ommons which was condering the Bill to withdraw re amendment so that it mild be re-drafted on a nar)wer basis.
Mr Horam told the commit "the amendment was degned to allow Freightliners ) operate under British Rail in le same way that it has done nder the National Freight orporation."
But he conceded that the overnment should have conilted with unions and the inistry before introducing the nendment.
He proposed that MPs on le committee should meet in -ivate to consider the worng of a new amendment med solely at the question of reightliner operations. The move comes as a surprise after Transport Minister William Rodgers told CM last week that there had been "an over-reaction" to the amendment, and was adamant that the amendment would be pushed through.
He said that the intention was to "make the Freightliner service as efficient under BR as it was under the NFC."
Mr Rodgers made clear that the Government's intention was that the Freightliner road fleet was going with the company on moving day.
He told CM that he did not visualise a time when BR would compete with road hauliers — the vehicles would be used solely for collection and delivery work.
Vehicles would be used "in much the same way as they have been under NFC control", said Mr Rodgers.
And he stressed that if the amendment was changed or deleted, he would ensure that BR was given the same operational opportunities as the NFC had enjoyed with Freightliners.
The amendment was also