Aircraft Industry (Financial Assistance)

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Aviation – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 28th November 1960.

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Photo of Mr George Chetwynd Mr George Chetwynd , Stockton-on-Tees 12:00 am, 28th November 1960

asked the Minister of Aviation what financial assistance he has offered to aircraft firms outside the two major groups; and what requests for assistance he has received from them.

Photo of Mr Peter Thorneycroft Mr Peter Thorneycroft , Monmouth

None, Sir. My Department has received a number of proposals, mainly in the light aircraft field, and these are being considered.

Photo of Mr George Chetwynd Mr George Chetwynd , Stockton-on-Tees

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is great anxiety on the part of one of these firms in particular that it will soon be running out of work? Will he consider any special steps that might be taken to provide work for this firm, of which, I believe, he is aware?

Photo of Mr Peter Thorneycroft Mr Peter Thorneycroft , Monmouth

If the hon. Gentleman will let me know which firm he has in mind, I will look into this. Extension of public funds in this field must be carried out with caution and discretion. Lots of people would like public funds, but it is part of my responsibility to see that they are wisely disbursed.

Photo of Mr George Strauss Mr George Strauss , Lambeth Vauxhall

May I take it that, if it puts up a good case, there is no bar on any firm outside one of the main groups from getting the funds which may be deemed appropriate?

Photo of Mr Peter Thorneycroft Mr Peter Thorneycroft , Monmouth

There has been no change of policy since it was announced by my right hon. Friend, who made it plain that in the case of specialised requirements or where public policy demanded it, help could be given outside the five main aircraft groups.