HC Deb 07 December 1934 vol 295 cc1971-3
1. Lieut.-Colonel ACLAND-TROYTE

asked the Minister of Health, whether he is in a position to announce further measures in connection with an inland water survey?

The MINISTER of HEALTH (Sir Hilton Young)

After consultation with the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research and other Departments concerned, and with their co-operation, the Secretary of State for Scotland and I have decided that a comprehensive inland water survey shall be undertaken for Great Britain. The information required for the purposes of the survey will be obtained by the Departments from water undertakers, catchment boards, and other qualified bodies and persons. In cases where records are desirable but are not now kept, measures will be undertaken to encourage the keeping of the necessary records. A water survey committee, composed of persons outside Government Departments, will be appointed to advise on the survey and on the progress of measures undertaken. In the constitution of the Committee attention will be paid to the inclusion of both scientific and practical experience. It will be open to the Water Survey Committee to make recommendations on any further measures which they consider necessary for the purposes of the survey and, particularly in the annual report, to state their views on the survey and to set out the conclusions to be drawn from the information re- ceived. Preliminary work has already been put in hand, and I hope shortly to announce the members of the Committee.

Lieut.-Colonel ACLAND-TROYTE

In thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his very full answer, may I ask if he can give any estimate of the cost of this survey?


No, but I do not anticipate that, at any rate in the first place, any substantial expenditure of Government money will be required.


What has happened to the survey that was started in 1924, which is not yet completed? Will my right hon. Friend tell the House when they are going to report, what their conclusions are, and why it is so essential for this survey now to take place when a comprehensive survey for the whole of the territory has been taking place for the last 10 years, and up to now we have had no report or anything said with regard to the conclusions they have arrived at, if any?


The survey to which my hon. Friend refers was, as I have explained on several occasions, the collection of information by the officers of the Department in the ordinary course of their business of water administration. The results ascertained will be available for the more complete survey which is now contemplated.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say how long this survey is likely to take?


No. It depends on the advice which we receive from the Advisory Committee on its formation.


Can my right hon. Friend say whether a report will be forthcoming from this 10 years' survey, and when they are likely to cease this particular survey, or is it going to run concurrently with the survey which my right hon. Friend has just announced?


I have explained to my hon. Friend that the survey to which he refers is the collection of information about water reserves, in the ordinary course of their duties, by the water officers of the Department. That will now be available for the new and extended survey under the Water Survey Committee, and its results will be incorporated in the report of that Committee.