HC Deb 30 June 1921 vol 143 cc2319-20

asked the Secretary of State for Air how many airships are now in the possession of his Department and where they are housed; how many are of British construction and how many have been surrendered by the Germans; if his Department still have any further airships under construction; and, if so, how many, and what is the estimated cost of same?

The SECRETARY of STATE for AIR (Captain Guest)

There are six airships in possession of the Air Ministry. The R.80 is at Howden; the R.33, the R.36, and the L.71 are at Pulham; and the R.37 and the R.38 are at Cardington, the last-named having been built for the United States. Of the six, five are of British construction and one, the L.71, was surrendered by the Germans along with another vessel, the L.64, which has been dismantled. There are no further airships under construction. The terms of the Government offer to dispose of the airships were issued as an Air Ministry Communiqué, of which I am sending my hon. Friend a copy.

Colonel Sir A. SYKES

Will the right hon. Gentleman inform us which airship was floating over the House as hon. Members came in this afternoon?

Captain GUEST

I think it was R.33.

Lieut. - Commander KENWORTHY

May we take it that in another month's time we shall have finally disposed of these costly productions?

Captain GUEST

Yes, Sir. The final date is the 1st August.