HC Deb 06 July 1938 vol 338 cc381-2
53. Mr. Chorlton

asked the Secretary of State for Air whether it is proposed to establish an aero-engine factory in Lancashire further than any already arranged because of the labour available; and whether any other parts, such as airframes, will be constructed in that county for similar reasons in the present expansion of the Royal Air Force?

Sir K. Wood

There is no present intention of establishing an aero-engine factory in Lancashire. With regard to the second part of the question, airframes are being produced by two factories in the county, enlargements to both of which have lately been approved, as well as by a third which is just over the Cheshire border. A considerable amount of work on the production of ancillary material is also being undertaken in Lancashire and, as I indicated in my reply to my hon. Friend on the 29th of last month, still further assistance is likely to be required from the industrial resources of that area.

Mr. Chorlton

In view of Lancashire having such a surplus of engineering labour, would it not be a good thing to establish aero-engine factories there instead of in the Birmingham district, where a great deal of work is being done, whereas in Lancashire our workers have nothing to do?

Colonel Wedgwood

What about Staffordshire, too?

Mr. George Griffiths

I would like to know whether it is not time that we had a couple of these factories in Yorkshire.

54. Mr. Chorlton

asked the Secretary of State for Air what other aerodromes than Speke, Liverpool, and the one belonging to Manchester, are located in Lancashire; and what steps are being taken to increase the number in view of the protection afforded by the Pennine Chain and the industrial means of the district?

Sir K. Wood

No other aerodromes used for Service purposes are located in Lancashire. The suitability of sites for these purposes depends on a variety of factors and the considerable investigations so far carried out by my Department have not disclosed any other sites which would be likely to meet Service requirements. If my hon. Friend has any particular areas in mind, I should be glad to consider them.