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SUBSTANTIAL illegal operation during 1975 was admitted by Sampson Coach and Travel Ltd when it sought to extend its excursions and tours from the area to the north of Enfield, the Metropolitan Traffic Commissioners were told at a three-day sitting.
The company was seeking a new excursions and tours licence for 25 dayand half-day excursions plus authority to operate to Dover for the Continent for tours of between one and four days duration. Picking-up points were proposed at Enfield, Ponders End, Waltham Abbey, Waltham Cross, Cheshunt, Flamstead End, Goffs Oak and Cuffley. The application were opposed by Horseshoe Coaches Ltd, Modern Super Coaches Ltd and Grosvenor Coaches Ltd.
For Sampson Mr H. Parroy said the company wished to offer a wider range of destinations. The operations of the objectors did not coincide to any extent with that of the applicant.
Unfortunately, because Sampson had thought agreement was likely with the objectors it had 'jumped the gun" —of the 10,386 passengers carried in 1975 6,214 had been carried without authority. Although reprehensible, it did show there was a demand.
The chairman, Mr A. S. Robertson, said the Commissioners did not view such operation with equanimity. Operators should not be encouraged to "whack up" evidence on demand in this manner.
Mr Parroy said that the company accepted that it had no reasonable excuse.
Mr P. Sampson, managing director, said this was the first time the company had failed to reach agreement with objectors to a licence application. It was seeking to expand; its 1975 results having exceeded_ his wildest expectations. Mr Frank Rupper, managing director of Horseshoe and of Modern Super Coaches, said that in 1975 traffic carried from Cheshunt, Waltham Cross and Waltham Abbey had fallen considerably compared with 1974. He believed a grant of the application would lead to a saturation of the market.
After Mr Parroy had commented that Horseshoe's was a miserably small programme, Mr Rupper said it was better to do a few tours properly than to fall down on a greater number.
Granting the application but restricting the operation of seaside excursions from Waltham Cross and Waltham Abbey to Saturdays only, Mr Robertson said the Commissioners felt the existing operators were entitled to some protection. Wasteful competition could result from Sampson being given full reign.