§ 35. Mr. PEMBERTON BILLING
asked the Under-Secretary of State for War, whether it is still the practice, where aeroplanes ordered in large quantities have been found unsuitable before delivery is completed, to accept delivery of the balance, and, although insisting upon acceptance test taking place, to remove the engines and burn the aeroplanes immediately after such acceptance; and whether he will consider the advisability, where machines have proved inefficient, of cancelling the order for those still undelivered?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the AIR BOARD (Major Baird)
it has never been the practice to burn aeroplanes immediately after acceptance when they have become obsolete, although it would be desirable on other grounds to dispose of them in that manner. It may, however, become necessary owing to shortage of storage accommodation to take this course before long in respect of certain machines, including some known colloquially as the "P.B. Scout." All contracts for machines which may become obsolete or have turned out to be unsuitable for active service or for instructional purposes are cancelled as soon as this can be done without injustice to the manufacturers.
§ Mr. BILLING
May I ask the hon. Member whether he is aware that at the present minute orders are being placed for machines which are known as obsolete, and that at the present minute, even as we are sitting here, brand new machines are having their engines removed and are being burned, and that more of that type are being made by the same firms to complete their contracts; and will he say whether it is the intention of the Government to cancel these contracts and compensate the contractors who are delivering known obsolete machines, thereby saving labour, if not the money that is being squandered on them?