23. Commander WILLIAMS
asked the Minister of Agriculture if, under the proposals of the Budget, any financial assistance will be given to the harbour of Brixham; and if he has borne in mind the great burden put on the fishing industry of the town by the wrecks which occurred during the War?
I am well aware of the very exceptional circumstances affecting the harbour undertaking of Brixham and of the unfortunate position in which it has been placed by reason of what took place in the War and other causes, and I am prepared to give sympathetic consideration to any application which may be made for financial assistance from the sum referred to in the Budget speech for the purpose of reducing dues and charges upon the fishing industry at the port.
Is the right hon. Gentleman likely to be able to come to a definite charge in this respect, and would it be in the nature of an annual payment or a lump sum down?
We are examining the matter of allocating any resources that are available on the basis of an annual subvention, and I hope in a very short time we shall be able to make an announcement.
I do not think that is necessary. We are in touch with all the authorities and are aware of the financial position.
While the right hon. Gentleman is about it, will he also bear in mind fishing harbours that have lost their breakwaters owing to heavy weather but are not able to rebuild them out of their funds?
That would be a matter for the Development Commission. That need of assistance is also before the Department.
§ Sir WILFRID SUGDEN
Will the right hon. Gentleman also remember the quay facilities on the East Coast, particularly in the Hartlepools?
East Coast harbours, generally speaking, are larger than the purely fishing harbours for which this special assistance was designed. All harbours of the same class will be considered.