HC Deb 11 April 1928 vol 162 cc1208-9
51. Mr. MOREL

asked the Prime Minister whether, in view of the evidence brought before the Royal Commission on Inland Waterways in connection with the Mid-Scotland Ship Canal and the numerous memoranda which have been exchanged between the Mid-Scotland Ship Canal National Association and various Government Departments during the last few years,, and the present condition of unemployment in Scotland, His Majesty's Government will consider the advisability of appointing a Committee to make an exhaustive examination of the scheme from the point of view of the national advantages which the construction of this canal might offer from the commercial and strategic point of view, as well as from the question of absorbing considerable section of the unemployed workers of Scotland now in receipt of Government maintenance from which no national return is received; and whether he will receive a deputation on the subject?


I would refer the hon. Member to the replies given on the 26th, 27th and 28th March by my hon. and gallant Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport to questions on this subject by the hon. Members for Barnstaple and Linlithgow. The Government would not be prepared to consider this scheme except as a commercial undertaking. No evidence has yet been adduced to show that the canal would be likely to pay its way, and my right hon. Friend does not think that in the circumstances any useful purpose would be served by the appointment of a Committee of the nature suggested or by his receiving a deputation on the subject.


Are we to understand that the Government. are prepared to consider this Question merely from the commercial point of view, without any regard to its other advantages?


Are the Government prepared to make inquiry as to what the result would probably be from the commercial point of view?