HC Deb 11 July 1944 vol 401 c1578
48. Mr. Bossom

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works, whether he will consider sending an advice to all local authorities, with jurisdiction over bombed towns of historic interest, asking them in their reconstruction work to instruct all contractors doing work locally to give any finds of antiquarian interest they may make to the local museum for safe keeping and take special care that such objects are not needlessly destroyed or stolen in the progress of the work.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works (Mr. Hicks)

The Ancient Monuments Section of my Ministry is in close touch with all such local authorities, but I will certainly consider my hon. Friend's suggestion. Finds do not belong to contractors but to the owners of the sites unless the finds are treasure trove.

Mr. Bossom

Might I suggest that file owners of these things should give them to the public and not keep them for themselves?

Mr. Hicks

A very great deal of work is done by antiquarian societies in conjunction with local authorities. I can assure the hon. Member that the matter is being very closely watched.