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End metric system 'mess,' says Lord Howe

Former foreign secretary Lord Howe of Aberavon. Credit: PA

Britain should drop pintsand miles in favour of a completely metric system, former foreign secretary Lord Howe of Aberavon has said.

Lord Howe, who was responsible for metrication as a minister in the 1970s, said using two competing systems was a 'universal mess.'

During a debate on the Queen's Speech the Conservative Peer said: "Litres for petrol and fizzy drinks, pints for beer and milk, metres and kilometres for athletics, miles per gallon for cars; the metric system for schools, yet all too often still pounds and ounces in the market."

He said it led to serious misunderstandings, accidents and "wastes our children's education".

"Quite bluntly, it puts us all to shame," he added.