HC Deb 22 October 1953 vol 518 cc2140-1
30. Mr. Dudley Williams

asked the President of the Board of Trade what is the present staff of the National Research Development Corporation at their offices in Tilney Street, W.1; and what increase is expected over the next two years.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

Since the Corporation is an independent organisation, I could not accept responsibility for answering Questions about its day-to-day activities. I understand, however, that the total staff in question numbers about 70, but I have no information about what increase, if any, the Corporation expects over the next two years, which must obviously vary according to the work undertaken at any time.

31. Mr. Dudley Williams

asked the President of the Board of Trade to what extent the National Research Development Corporation is financed out of public funds.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

Section 7 of the Development of Inventions Act, 1948, empowers the Board of Trade, with the consent of the Treasury, to make advances to the Corporation of up to £5 million within five years of its establishment, approximately £480,000 had been advanced up to June, 1953. The Corporation has also a small but increasing income from royalties and profits.

Mr. Williams

Has my right hon. Friend any control over the manner in which the money advanced by his Department to this Corporation is spent, because I understand that in the next two years it will be spending something like £20,000 on the Tilney Street offices and that no substantial increase in staff is expected?

Mr. Thorneycroft

As my hon. Friend will see from studying the answer this organisation has pursued a very conservative financial policy, because out of a limit of £5 million it has spent only £480,000.