HC Deb 22 October 1946 vol 427 cc1458-9
25. Mr. Keeling

asked the Secretary of State for War how soon the derelict tank near the footpath from Chequers to White-leaf, in the Chilterns, of which he was informed three months ago, will be removed; whether the broken-down huts and water tanks, obsolete notice-boards and litter of corrugated iron, sandbags and broken bottles left by his Department there will be removed at the same time; and whether he will issue general instructions that all discarded Army material disfiguring the countryside is to be cleared away as soon as possible.

Mr. Bellenger

The derelict tank will be removed as soon as possible. I have already given instructions to this effect, but the salvaging of a mass of metal badly damaged and without its tracks may present some difficulty. The other items which are of no further use to the Army will be removed as labour becomes available. So far as discarded Army material in general is concerned, the hon. Member may rest assured that it will be removed as and when the manpower situation allows.

Mr. Keeling

Will the Minister say whether this tank and these sandbags were left at Chequers for the protection of the Prime Minister?

Mr. Wilson Harris

Is the Minister aware that, according to a letter from his Department, some 18 miles of rusty barbed wire is coiling about the common of Leith Hill district, Surrey, and can he hold out any hope that this barbed wire will be removed in the next year or two?

Mr. Bellenger

I am afraid that barbed wire is one of our main difficulties, and we should welcome any volunteers to help us to remove it.