HC Deb 30 March 1950 vol 473 c563
46. Mr. Hurd

asked the Minister of Agriculture how much land was being farmed by county agricultural executive committees on 1st January, 1949, and 1st January, 1950; and how much of this committee land he intends shall be handed back to private occupation by the end of this year.

The Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Thomas Williams)

Committees were farming 212,505 acres on 1st January, 1949, and 156,783 acres on 1st January, 1950. Of the latter, 111,513 acres are under requisition by my Department. About one-third of this area will be released this year, while most of the remainder, which consists largely of land which was formerly non-agricultural, will be released in 1951 or 1952. The other 45,270 acres is land owned or under requisition by other Departments. Its future has still to be settled, but release of about 1,000 acres is likely during this year.

Mr. Hurd

In view of the heavy losses resulting from this type of farming, will the Minister now make up his mind to wind up this enterprise at the end of this year?

Mr. Williams

The Minister has already made up his mind to do the right thing with land under requisition.