HC Deb 23 August 1945 vol 413 cc788-9
63. Mr. Keeling

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how soon he expects to remove the restrictions on the return of Channel Islanders to their homes; and if he will publish in the OFFICIAL REPORT a statement of the circumstances which make these restrictions still necessary.

Mr. Ede

The control of travel to the Channel Islands now operating was imposed at the request of the military governor and of the Island authorities. Its object was to ensure the orderly return of residents by giving priority to those for whom accommodation was immediately available, or who were urgently required for purposes of reconstruction. I am in communication with the Island authorities on the question whether such control is any longer required, and if they agree that its purpose has been sufficiently achieved it will be withdrawn.

Mr. Keeling

Is the Minister satisfied that no attempt is being made by Channel Islanders who remained in the Channel Islands to delay the return of their business or professional rivals?

Mr. Ede

This is the first time that I have heard of any insinuation to that effect. I have seen the Bailiffs of Jersey and Guernsey and the two Lieutenant-Governors who are now proceeding to the Islands, and all concerned are exceedingly anxious that the flow of repatriates should go on as uninterruptedly as possible. There was, however, a great misfortune. We had two steamers available for the transport of people to these Islands. One of them, unfortunately, broke down and has been out of commission for some weeks, but as soon as it can be brought back to service the flow will be expedited.

Mr. John Jones

Is my right hon. Friend aware that some Channel Islanders, who received travelling warrants last June, and under instructions sent furniture, clothing and other things to Jersey, are still awaiting transport from this country? They are now in a very unfortunate position.

Mr. Ede

If my hon. Friend will see me I shall be quite willing to go into any cases which he can bring to my notice.