HC Deb 27 January 1949 vol 460 cc1081-2
10. Mr. Peter Thorneycroft

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is yet in a position to announce the setting up of the National Research Development Corporation which was to be established under the Development of Inventions Act, 1948.

The President of the Board of Trade (Mr. Harold Wilson)

In view of the unusual and difficult nature of the work which the National Research Development Corporation will have to do, I have felt that I must exercise the utmost care in the selection of the people who will have the direction of its affairs, and finding suitable people is not proving an easy task. I cannot yet say when I shall be in a position to make an announcement.

Mr. Thorneycroft

While fully appreciating the points which the right hon. Gentleman makes, may I ask if he is aware that my constituents are continually producing the most ingenious inventions, and asking me to urge the Government to provide money under this Act? Will be press on with the matter?

Mr. Wilson

It is precisely because of that fact, and because other hon. Members have ingenious constituents, that we have to be very careful in the appointment of members to this Corporation.

Sir G. Jeffreys

Is it not a fact that the right hon. Gentleman has received many letters on this subject, some of which have been left unanswered for a very long time, from persons who have claims against this fund?

Mr. Wilson

There are no claims against this fund at all; that is not how it works. But it is a fact that my predecessors and I have received many letters on the subject of inventions, and I have every incentive for seeing that the Corporation is set up as quickly as possible.