HC Deb 22 October 1946 vol 427 cc1451-2
12. Mr. Keeling

asked the Secretary of State for War which commons and public open spaces, requisitioned during the war, his Department proposes to acquire; and whether he will give the earliest possible notice to planning authorities of any future proposals for such acquisition.

22. Mr. Vane

asked the Secretary of State for War when his Department intends to derequisition the Ullswater training areas and firing ranges and to remove the unsightly hutted camp at Glenridding.

38. Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will make a statement regarding the pro- posal to use Ashdown Forest as a permanent military training ground.

Mr. J. Freeman

As my right hon. Friend explained last Tuesday, in reply to a Question by the noble Member for South Dorset (Viscount Hinchingbrooke), I cannot say which areas will be allocated to the Army until the recommendations of the Interdepartmental Committee, now considering Service requirements as a whole, are available. As then said, he will endeavour to make a statement as soon as possible.

Mr. Keeling

As commons and open spaces belong to the public, does the Financial Secretary realise that the public will expect the War Office to give the fullest publicity to any proposal to take them over for the Government? Will the hon. Gentleman answer the second part of my Question, No. 12?

Mr. Freeman

I realise the point which the hon. Gentleman has brought out in his supplementary. With regard to the second part of his Question, an Inter-Departmental Committee is considering this, and I can say that the fullest notice will be given and the fullest consultation taken with the interested parties before a decision is arrived at.

Mr. Vane

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the camp referred to in Question No. 22 is a ramshackle, temporary affair, extremely badly sited in the middle of a small village, and the absolute negation of good planning? Will he take steps to look into the matter closely before coming to any decision to make this camp permanent, as it is miles from the training areas, most unpopular with the troops, and has nothing whatever to commend it?

Mr. Freeman

Of course I will give an undertaking that I will look into it, bat what I will not do is to give a decision about an individual camp pending the whole decision of the Inter-Departmental Committee.