§ 81. Mr. MORGAN JONES
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether the University of Wales will be permitted to participate in the increased grants as recently announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer; and 1328 whether, in fixing the amount of the grain which may be available for the Welsh University, regard will be had to the failure of the Treasury to fulfil its promise to provide a pound for every pound raised by the University authorities?
I have no doubt that in the recommendations as to the application of the grants in question, which will in due course be submitted to the Treasury by the University Grants Committee, the needs of the University of Wales will be as fully considered as the needs of other Universities. I cannot anticipate the Committee's recommendations, but I should expect that in accordance with their usual practice they will take a large variety of circumstances into account, including the amount of financial support locally contributed. The adoption of any rigid mechanical formula is, however, inconsistent with any general scheme for distribution of the large fixed sums now voted for University education. I should perhaps point out that the University of Wales already receives a generous grant from the Treasury, and that the proportion of its total income derived from Parliamentary grants is considerably above the average for Universities in England and Scotland.
It is true that in 1918, during the War, the then Prime Minister, the right hon. Member for Carnarvon Boroughs (Mr. Lloyd George) made a promise of the kind referred to, but it is obvious that he cannot bind Parliament in perpetuity, under quite different conditions, where, instead of a grant of £500,000, there is now one of £1,500,000. We have to hold the scales even between Wales and the other parts of the Kingdom.
§ Sir CLEMENT KINLOCH-COOKE
Can the right hon. Gentleman say how much is proposed to be granted to the Welsh University under these conditions, because there has been a cutting down of the grants to the Welsh University?
As the promise was only for five years, and it was given in 1918, it has clearly lapsed.
§ Sir HENRY CRAIK
If the grants were decided on the number of students, is the right hon. Gentleman aware that Wales would have a very small grant?
§ Mr. MORGAN JONES
Owing to the very unsatisfactory nature of the reply, I beg to give notice that I will raise this matter at the earliest possible moment.