HC Deb 07 July 1948 vol 453 cc344-5
2. Mr. John Lewis

asked the Postmaster-General when it is anticipated that the Birmingham television station will be in operation; and if he will make a further statement on the likelihood of similar facilities being available in Lancashire in the near future.

Mr. Hobson

The B.B.C. hope that their television station now being built at Sutton Coldfield near Birmingham, will be working in the Autumn of next year. One of the next stations will be in the North of England. The problems involved in extending the service to that area are being worked out now.

Mr. Lewis

Is my hon. Friend aware that we are far behind the Americans in the development of television services, and that if we continue to lag behind our export markets for both transmission apparatus and television receivers will very likely be put in jeopardy?

Mr. Hobson

I am not admitting the implication in the supplementary question that we are behind the United States. The only reason for the restriction on expansion of television services is that the raw materials necessary are required more urgently for other purposes.

Mr. Tiffany

Could my hon. Friend say when the East Midlands are likely to be covered by the television services?

Mr. Hobson

If a place is within 50 miles of Sutton Coldfield it will be covered by the station we are at the present moment erecting.

Squadron-Leader Fleming

Have any surveys taken place for a likely site in the Lancashire area?

Mr. Hobson

That is at the present moment being done.

Mr. Scollan

Is there any chance of Scotland having television?

Mr. Speaker

This Question deals with England and not Scotland.