HC Deb 02 April 1953 vol 513 cc1357-8
45. Mr. Albu

asked the Prime Minister whether he will appoint a Parliamentary Secretary to the Lord President of the Council's Department so that a junior Minister will be available in the House of Commons with responsibility for scientific research and its application.

The Lord Privy Seal (Mr. Harry Crookshank)

I have been asked to reply.

No, Sir. The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works takes Questions in the House of Commons about the responsibilities of the Lord President for scientific research.

Mr. Albu

Without reflecting in any way on the amiability or competence of the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works, may I ask whether the right hon. Gentleman realises the considerable anxiety in scientific and industrial circles at the lack of interest shown by the Government in scientific research? Is not this reflected by the invidious comparison drawn by the Prime Minister between science and the humanities in his letter to the T.U.C. on adult education?

Mr. Ellis Smith

Will the right hon. Gentleman convey to the Prime Minister the desire of many people that if any changes should be made, a senior Minister should deal with these problems? Will he also convey to the Prime Minister the disappointment of many people in industry that economies are being made at the expense of scientific research?

Mr. Crookshank

Those supplementary questions are rather wide of the Question on the Order Paper. All I can say about the original Question is that the previous Government, of course, as well as the present Government, have reaffirmed that the responsibility for civilian research should rest with the Lord President.