§ The following Question stood upon the Order Paper in the name of Mr. PETER THORNEYCROFT:
§ 54. To ask the Minister of Town and Country Planning to what extent he has consulted the Minister of Agriculture over the proposal of the Cardiff City Council to acquire, by compulsory purchase, valuable agricultural land lying to the eastward of that city.
May I raise a point of Order on this Question? It refers, Mr. Speaker, as you will see, to the attempted compulsory purchase by Cardiff Corporation of valuable agricultural land in Monmouthshire. I originally put the Question down to the Minister of Agriculture. I received a message from the Minister of Agriculture that it would not be convenient for him to be here on Thursday. I said it was inconvenient for me too, but would he or his Parliamentary Secretary attempt to answer the Question. Then and then only was it transferred to the Minister of Town and Country Planning. I would ask you, Sir, in what way I can raise this very important matter of agricultural interest with the Ministry concerned?
§ Wing-Commander Millington
Are you aware, Sir, that the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture is sitting in this House?
§ Mr. Speaker
I have no control; I cannot say what Minister shall answer what Question. It has nothing to do with me. I have no power in the matter.
§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Town and Country Planning (Mr. King)
There has been full consultation between my Department and the Ministry of Agriculture, and due weight will be given to the agricultural value of the land.
Can I be satisfied that the Minister of Agriculture will do his best to safeguard the future of this 3036 agricultural land, which is of great value in view of the present food shortage in this country, and see that it is not swallowed up by any urban development?
§ Mr. King
My right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture will obviously carry out his duties as he ought to do. It is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Minister of Town and Country Planning to arbitrate between Departments over land use. He is in constant consultation with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture.
What representations has the Minister of Agriculture made about this? Is he asking the Minister of Town and Country Planning to keep away from this land or not?