asked the Minister of Aviation to what extent British European Airways in appealing against the decision of the Air Transport Licensing Board regarding the air service licence granted to Eagle Airways for the Glasgow route based their appeal on Section 2(2,c) of the Civil Aviation (Licensing) Act, 1960; and what inquiries he made about the terms and conditions of service of the employees of Eagle Airways.
Is not it the case that Section 2(2,c), which I mention in the Question, lays on the Board the need to consider whether an applicant takes unfair advantage over other operators? Has the right hon. Gentleman looked into the terms and conditions of employment of pilots in B.E.A. as compared with those employed by Eagle Airways? Is he aware that the senior pilots of B.E.A. are paid £1,000 a year more than those of Eagle Airways, and that the flying hours and duty hours of B.E.A. are much shorter than those of Eagle Airways? Does not the Minister realise that this is a case of defying the conditions of the Civil Aviation (Licensing) Act? Can he say whether or not the Air Transport Licensing Board took into consideration these facts when it granted Eagle Airways permission to fly between London and Glasgow?
I am sure that this matter has been considered very carefully. In licensing Eagle Airways on this route in 1961 the Board said that it was satisfied that Eagle Airways was complying with the criteria in Section 2(2,a-c). In appealing in December, 1961, against the licensing of Eagle Airways on this route, B.E.A. did not quote Section 2(2,c) among its grounds of appeal and, therefore, the matter has not been formally presented to me. It is significant that the Board said that Eagle Airways was complying with the criteria when the Board made its decision and that B.E.A. did not quote these arguments in its appeal against Eagle Airways. After all, those are the two parties principally concerned.