§ 59. Mr. Stuart Russell
asked the Secretary of State for Air whether he can give any information as to the progress in stimulating the development and production by the aircraft industry of suitable types of air liners in accordance with the recommendations of the Cadman Committee?
Yes, Sir. A twoengined monoplane capable of carrying 12–17 passengers and of cruising at over 200 miles per hour is at present under construction by Messrs. de Havillands, and as far as can be seen at present should be on the market next summer. Further, an outline specification has been prepared in consultation with the operating companies for an all-metal, four-engined monoplane weighing about 40,000 lb. and capable of a cruising speed of 200 miles per hour and of carrying 20 passengers from London—Berlin non-stop. A general specification has also been prepared for a four-engined all-metal landplane weighing 70,000 lb. intended for high speed long range flights. There will be two versions—a low altitude version flying at 10,000 feet and a high altitude version, with a pressure cabin, flying at 25,000 feet at a speed of 275 miles per hour. It is intended to be in production by the summer of 1940 and instructions to proceed have already been placed by the Air Ministry for the production of prototypes of both versions.
In order to make first-hand acquaintance with the latest features of civil aircraft now being developed in America, it has been arranged that the Director of Civil Research and Production should visit the United States of America and Canada in the autumn of this year.
§ Mr. Montague
If it will be possible by 1940 to carry 40 passengers to Berlin, will it also be possible to carry 40 bombs to Berlin?
§ Sir Joseph Lamb
On a point of Order. Is it permissible for an hon. Member from the Front Opposition Bench to ask, as a supplementary question, a question containing a suggestion such as the hon. Gentleman has made?
§ Mr. Montague
I rise with permission to make a personal explanation. I realise that a supplementary question I put this afternoon is open to serious misunderstanding, and that such misunderstanding was entirely my own fault. I assure the House that in that supplementary question all I had in mind was the general question of the range of military aircraft. I had no other thought, and I hope that you, Mr. Speaker, and the House will accept my apology and my withdrawal of that supplementary question.