HC Deb 28 February 1940 vol 357 cc2045-6
17. Mr. Simmonds

asked the Secretary of State for Air the number and gross weight of British civil aircraft, excluding those upon Dominion register, operating on oversea air routs during August, 1939, and at the present date?

Captain Balfour

On 31st August last the number of aircraft registered in the United Kingdom so employed was 63, with a total gross weight of 742 tons. The corresponding figures on 27th February were 45 aircraft, with a total gross weight of 603 tons.

Mr. Simmonds

Is there a firm intention to increase the number and tonnage at an early date, in view of the importance of civil aviation, equally with the Mercantile Marine, in time of war?

Captain Balfour

We have every hope of being able to continue and where possible to develop our civil aviation services, but this reduction is in part due not to war causes, but to the cessation of the summer Transatlantic service.

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