HC Deb 22 May 1939 vol 347 cc1908-9
40. Mr. Lyons

asked the Lord Privy Seal whether he is aware that, as shown by the recent report of the British Institute of Public Opinion, over half the adults of Great Britain have no idea what to do in an air-raid; and whether, in view of public anxiety on this question, he will circulate a short memorandum of instruction for the guidance of all concerned?

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Mr. W. S. Morrison)

I have been asked to reply. My right hon. Friend is having leaflets prepared, for distribution throughout the country, so that the public may know as fully as possible what they should do to protect themselves in the event of air-raids.

Mr. Lyons

Can the right hon. Gentleman take steps to see that the necessary information is sent to the local headquarters, for distribution by the districts?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

I will convey that suggestion to my right hon. Friend.

Mr. R. C. Morrison

Will the right hon. Gentleman suggest to the B.B.C. that they should institute a series of regular weekly talks on A.R.P. in order that people may understand the many complex questions that arise in connection therewith?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

I think that suggestion is also worthy of consideration.

Mr. Acland

Is not the reason why people do not know what to do in regard to air raids, that the Government do not know, either?

37. Mr. Lewis

asked the Postmaster-General whether, where a telephone subscriber is prepared to pay for the cost of telephone wires being laid to an underground air-raid shelter on his land, the Post Office is willing to carry out the work and to make no further charge by way of rental unless and until a telephone instrument is actually installed?

Major Tryon

There are serious objections to the provision of telephone lines to private air-raid shelters on the basis suggested by my hon. Friend, as there would be no assurance that the line was in working order, nor could the Post Office guarantee the prompt installation of the telephone instrument after the emergency had arisen.

Mr. Lewis

Does my right hon. and gallant Friend appreciate that underground work of this kind, which is of a most important and necessary nature, should be made at the time when the shelters are built? As work of this kind will be very costly, will my right hon. and gallant Friend's Department do something in the matter?

Major Tryon

Certainly, telephones can be installed in these cases, but the suggestion was that the instruments should be installed after the outbreak of an emergency.