Shackleton Aircraft

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 30th November 1964.

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Photo of Mr Victor Goodhew Mr Victor Goodhew , St Albans 12:00 am, 30th November 1964

asked the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects to receive replacements for the Shackleton aircraft of Coastal Command; and what aircraft these will be.

Photo of Mr Denis Healey Mr Denis Healey , Leeds East

I have nothing to add to the Answer I gave on 16th November, 1964.

Photo of Mr Victor Goodhew Mr Victor Goodhew , St Albans

Is there not an urgent need for replacement of this aircraft? Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this matter was in the minds of the previous Government and that it is essential for the Services to have a decision at an early date? Is he further aware that it is also in the interest of our own aircraft industry that we should know whether this aircraft will be built here or abroad?

Photo of Mr Denis Healey Mr Denis Healey , Leeds East

I am reviewing the content of the defence programme, including the question of replacing the Shackleton, and I am not prepared to go beyond that statement at the present time.

Photo of Mr Anthony Royle Mr Anthony Royle , Richmond (Surrey)

Is the right hon. Gentleman considering the purchase of a foreign aircraft as a replacement? Will he answer "yes" or "no"?

Photo of Mr Denis Healey Mr Denis Healey , Leeds East

It would not be fair to list the aircraft we are considering but they include all those which may conceivably meet our requirements.