HC Deb 13 June 1939 vol 348 cc1074-5
9. Mr. Kirkwood

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he has yet come to a decision on the Highland Economic Committee's Report; if not, when can that decision be expected; and, as the matter is urgent, whether he will see that no further time be lost in taking action?

15. Mr. Neil Maclean

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he has considered the resolutions dealing with a programme of reconstruction for the High lands, passed by a conference recently held by the crofters' unions at Mallaig, among which was one for the setting up of a representative commission; and whether he is now in a position to give any information regarding the steps the Government will take to assist in carrying through that programme?

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. Colville)

I am not yet in a position to make a statement, but I hope to do so before the Recess.

Mr. Kirkwood

Will the Secretary of State inform the House the reason for the delay on this very urgent matter? He agreed long ago that it was an urgent matter and that it would have his immediate attention.

Mr. Colville

The hon. Member knows that the Highland problem is exceedingly difficult to solve, and that we have to consult a number of local authorities.

Mr. Maclean

Is it not the case that this has been a problem for many years, and is it not time that the Government took some action in the matter in order to prevent the depopulation of the High lands?

Mr. Henderson Stewart

Does not the Secretary of State agree that there are a number of steps that might be taken immediately with general agreement in regard to the Highlands?

Mr. Colville

I am looking at the problem in all its aspects, and I have in mind the particular question referred to by the hon. Member for Govan (Mr. Maclean).

Mr. Gallacher

Is there not complete agreement on the part of Scottish Members of all parties on this particular matter?

Mr. Colville

There may be agreement that something should be done, but there is not agreement as to what the steps should be.

Back to
Forward to