HC Deb 16 June 1955 vol 542 cc752-4
46 and 47. Mr. Ellis Smith

asked the Prime Minister (1) if he will have published for the Atoms for Peace Exhibition to be held in Geneva the full story up-to-date of our contribution and the part played by Lord Rutherford, C. R. Burch, T. E. Allibone, T. S. Walton, Sir John Cockcroft, J. D. Craggs, N. Elce, H. Smethhurst and M. E. Haine; and if he will arrange that the language be as simplified as possible and printed in all languages where there will be a demand for the publication;

(2) if he will now have published a full report on the English contribution made under Government auspices towards splitting the atom, on the Trafford Park designed and built prototype machines for the atomic bomb project, the dates upon which Dr. Allibone left Manchester for the purpose of taking charge of the British and United States scientists at the University of California, on who introduced the electro-magnetic method of separating uranium isotopes and on other historic and informative information that will give the credit where it is due so that it will be on record for the future.

The Prime Minister (Sir Anthony Eden)

A book entitled "The Commonwealth and Nuclear Development," designed for those of us who are not specialists, has been prepared by the Central Office of Information. I hope that it will be available in time for the Geneva Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy. The book will be on sale in this country through Her Majesty's Stationery Office, and is being distributed abroad free of charge by the United Kingdom Information Offices in English, French and Spanish. This book gives an up-to-date account of the British contribution to nuclear research.

Some details of the United Kingdom contribution during the years 1939 to 1945 were given in official statements released in 1945. British developments in atomic energy have been reported in a number of publications since then. In addition a considerable amount of information of a more technical nature has already been published. I do not think that any further official publication is required at this time.

Mr. Smith

While welcoming that reply, provided that it gives credit where it is due to the number of British scientists who made such a valuable contribution prior to the Americans taking advantage of our research, what I should like to ask the Prime Minister is this: does he agree with me that the world is on the eve of a mid-20th century revolution in the production of power, and, if so, does he agree that British scientists and engineers could take the initiative in the world in this, provided that they have encouragement and financial support; and, therefore, will he give attention to this so that our scientists and engineers may be given the support they deserve?

The Prime Minister

I do not think that I would dispute anything that the hon. Gentleman said just now. The House as a whole will endorse it. That is why we have tried to put this out in a popular form, which I think will be effective and I think meets the need which the hon. Gentleman himself has in mind.