HC Deb 22 July 1926 vol 198 cc1409-10

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if the Treasury has in recent years made grants to any land drainage bodies for specific schemes or to assist them in their current expenditures; which these bodies were; and how much were the grants?


As the answer is rather long, I will, with my hon. Friend's permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Following is the answer:

Grants were made during the four years 1921–22 to 1924–25 to a large number of commissioners of sewers, drainage boards and other statutory drainage authorities towards the cost of approved schemes. These grants were made primarily with the object of alleviating unemployment in rural areas during the winter months.

The total net cost to the State of these schemes was as follows:

1921–22 169,507
1922–23 185,839
1923–24 134,217
1924–25 114,557

The figure for 1924–25 is approximate, certain accounts having not yet been finally settled.

The number of separate authorities who participated in these grants was 177, and I therefore hesitate to specify them in detail, but if my hon. Friend has any particular area in mind and will communicate with me, I will endeavour to give him the desired information.

Further moneys have been set aside for the purpose of assisting these bodies to carry out, during the five years commencing on the 1st April, 1926, more comprehensive drainage schemes designed to confer a wide benefit on agricultural land. Thirteen schemes for 11 authorities have already been approved by the Ministry, the amount of the contributions which the Ministry may be called upon to make being estimated at £23,000 up to the present date.