Brabazon II

Oral Answers to Questions — Civil Aviation – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th July 1950.

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Photo of Mr John Profumo Mr John Profumo , Stratford-on-Avon 12:00 am, 26th July 1950

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation how many aerodromes in the United Kingdom it is proposed to equip with runways suitable for the Brabazon II.

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

There is no intention at present of equipping any more aerodromes with runways suitable for the Brabazon II.

Photo of Mr John Profumo Mr John Profumo , Stratford-on-Avon

That seems to me a very unsatisfactory answer. Is the Minister giving enough consideration to the probability of having to set down 100 passengers at a time at an alternative aerodrome when the weather over the major aerodrome is not satisfactory for landing; and could this not be studied as a matter of immediate importance?

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

Quite clearly, this has been studied. I was asked for the number of aerodromes available, presumably for ordinary operations.

Photo of Mr Nigel Fisher Mr Nigel Fisher , Hitchin

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation when it is proposed to start an Atlantic service using the Brabazon II; and what special financial arrangements will have to made with the Corporation.

Photo of Mr Niall Macpherson Mr Niall Macpherson , Dumfriesshire

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation what projects are being considered for utilising the Brabazon II at the completion of its test flying.

Photo of Mr Edwin Leather Mr Edwin Leather , Somerset North

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation (1) when it is proposed to take a final decision on the ordering of further Brabazon II's;

(2) what are his intentions with regard to the use to be made of the Brabazon II which is on order.

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

I have nothing to add to the statement I made during the course of my reply to the Debate in Committee of Supply on 6th July, 1950.

Photo of Mr Nigel Fisher Mr Nigel Fisher , Hitchin

Will the Minister give an assurance that B.O.A.C. are prepared to put their heart into this job? At the moment they seem to be very lukewarm about this particular commission.

Air Commodore Harvey:

Can the Parliamentary Secretary say whether the Government have made up their mind whether or not they are going to proceed with the construction of three of these aircraft, which are required to operate the Atlantic service?

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

I answered that point in the remarks that I made in the Debate.

Photo of Mr Niall Macpherson Mr Niall Macpherson , Dumfriesshire

Does the Minister think that it is consonant with British prestige that we should construct an aircraft of this weight and dimensions and then not know what to do with it?

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

I think that it is wrong to say that we do not know what to do with it. We propose to fly this aircraft.

Photo of Mr Edwin Leather Mr Edwin Leather , Somerset North

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation if the runways at present in use on major aerodromes are suitable for emergency landings of the Brabazon when equipped with the modified undercarriage.

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

Emergency landings could be made at at least a dozen aerodromes in the United Kingdom.

Photo of Mr Edwin Leather Mr Edwin Leather , Somerset North

Will the Parliamentary Secretary ensure that the versatility of the Brabazon is much more widely known, because there is a great deal of misunderstanding on this point? Will he also bear in mind the immense importance of employment policy in the local areas?