HC Deb 30 April 1956 vol 552 cc16-7
22. Commander Agnew

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he is aware of the continuing damage, amounting to substantial erosion and loss of acreage, being caused to the land bordering the navigable portion or the River Severn, between Gloucester and Worcester; and whether, following the conference held at Worcester on 9th February, 1956, he will consult with the British Transport Commission with a view to ensuring that action is taken by that body to restrict further the speed of their own barges and those of other users of the river.

Mr. Amory

I am aware that there is considerable erosion of the banks of the River Severn between Gloucester and Worcester. My Department is in touch with the British Transport Commission which is considering whether an alteration of the present speed limit would have any effect on this problem. I also understand that representatives of the British Transport Commission and the Severn River Board will shortly meet to consider the possibility of remedial works on the banks.

Commander Agnew

Is my right hon. Friend aware that the land-owning and farming interests on the banks of this river regard him as a protector of agricultural land and are expecting him to use his good offices with the other Government Departments and Commissions concerned to see that something is done in the near future to remedy the erosion which is taking place?

Mr. Amory

I assure my hon. and gallant Friend that I will do my best. I am very glad to have the evidence which he has given me of the rôle in which I am regarded by the agricultural community at large.