HC Deb 04 July 1940 vol 362 cc1006-7
65. Mr. De la Bère

asked the Home Secretary whether he can now make some statement about the recent civilian evacuation from the Channel Islands?

Sir J. Anderson

When it was decided to demilitarise the Channel Islands special facilities were made available for certain categories of the population to come to the mainland, and 22,656 persons took advantage of these facilities. In addition, a number of persons left by other means, including air transport. It is estimated that altogether 25,000 persons left the Islands.

Mr. De la Bère

Would not the right hon. Gentleman wish to put on record his appreciation of the tireless skill and courage displayed by the pilots of Jersey Airways?

Sir J. Anderson

I believe that observation is fully justified.

Mr. Mander

How many people remain on the island?

Sir J. Anderson

The total population was, I believe 92,000.

Mr. Benjamin Smith

Would it not have been preferable compulsorily to evacuate the whole of the islands and defend them ourselves?

Sir J. Anderson

That is another matter.