HC Deb 25 June 1956 vol 555 cc16-7
24. Mr. Speir

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what arrangements the Forestry Commission are now prepared to make for either burning a belt of heather themselves on neighbouring land alongside the boundaries of their plantations or to assist the occupiers of such land with burning operations.

Mr. Amory

The Forestry Commission is prepared either to burn protective belts on land adjoining plantations, or to help its neighbours to do so, wherever the risk to the Commission's plantations is high. Normally burning under this arrangement would be limited to a strip 30 yards wide, but where wider burning is essential this would be undertaken.

Mr. Speir

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, in spite of the more helpful attitude which the Forestry Commission is now adopting, there is still very great concern among sheep farmers? Will he bear this concern in mind and ask the Commission to see whether further arrangements cannot be made?

Mr. Amory

I note what my hon. Friend has said. I hope that this attitude of the Forestry Commission will be generally regarded by neighbouring farmers as reasonable and helpful. If there are other suggestions which my hon. Friend can make, I shall be very glad to consider them.