HC Deb 21 March 1940 vol 358 cc2116-7
56. Mr. De la Bère

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, in connection with the maximum output being obtained from the land, he will consider giving some financial assistance, through the county war agricultural committees, to agriculturists for the purpose of providing tile drainage where mole drainage is ineffective?

Sir R. Dorman-Smith

The grant-aided scheme for mole drainage was put into force in order to deal expeditiously with the heavy land problem. Having regard to the cost, time and labour involved in tile drainage, it was felt that any scheme of financial assistance could not operate, to any extent, in time for the 1940 harvest.

Mr. De la Bère

Is my right hon. and gallant Friend aware that there is much that is left undone and not provided for in the war Agriculture Act, and can he tell us whether he proposes to bring in a comprehensive scheme that will conduce to the maximum output being obtained from the land? Is he aware that what is being done is no good, and that something more must be done?

Sir R. Dorman-Smith

I cannot accept my hon. Friend's statement that the Act is no good. For instance, the Act gives a grant for mole drainage. The question of tile drainage is a matter for consideration.