HC Deb 12 June 1945 vol 411 cc1440-1
13. Major Kimball

asked the Secretary of State for War whether the owners of horses which were requisitioned for the Army in the early months of the war can now be allowed to re-purchase those horses; and at what reduction from the requisitioning price.

Sir J. Griģģ

Provided the horses are in this country they will be put up to auction when they become surplus. Arrangements have been made to give notice of the sale to those who have asked to be given an opportunity of buying specific horses.

Major Kimball

Does my right hon. Friend think it is fair to the owners of these horses which were requisitioned that they should now only be given the chance of getting them back at a public auction, where they will have to bid for what is their own, and will not be allowed to buy them back at the prices at which they were requisitioned?

Sir J. Griģģ

I should have thought that the arrangement I mentioned was a reasonably fair one, but I will certainly consider whether it is possible to make arrangements which are more favourable to those who originally gave up the horses.

Mr. Glenvil Hall

Will the Minister take steps to see that any horses sent to the Continent are not sold there, in view of the fact that many people there do not know how to treat them?

Sir J. Griģģ

That does not arise directly out of this Question, but I have given answers on that point previously in the House, and I will send the hon. Member a reference after I have refreshed my memory.

Mr. Evelyn Walkden

Would the Minister also stop horses being sold to syndicates and little trusts which somehow buy good working horses and sell them as horse flesh because there is a market for it abroad?

Sir J. Griģģ

That Question ought to be put on the Order Paper, because it contains an entirely new point and allegations which I am not in a position to check now.

Commander Locker-Lampson

One of them may win the Derby one day.