HC Deb 07 July 1955 vol 543 c1276
5. Mr. Gower

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what progress has been made during the past twelve months in the release of properties held under requisition or otherwise by or on behalf of his Department; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Amory

Land held under requisition for farming purposes fell from about 24,000 to 15,000 acres, and premises used as depots or hostels from 123 to 68 in the year ended 1st July, 1955. Land held for temporary allotments by local authorities on my behalf fell from 4,400 to 3,000 acres in the year ended September, 1954.

Mr. Gower

While thanking my right hon. Friend for that reply, may I ask him whether he is aware that, rightly or wrongly, there still appears to be apprehension in the minds of many people that land and properties are held by his Department, or by other bodies acting on his behalf, without good public reason? Can he give us an assurance that each case has been, or will be, re-examined in the light of that test?

Mr. Amory

Yes, I have had a review made of all land and properties held under requisition. If my hon. Friend has any case in mind in which he thinks there is no good reason, on public grounds, for retaining requisitioning, I shall be glad to look at it.