HC Deb 06 February 1957 vol 564 cc415-6
10. Major Wall

asked the Secretary of State for Air how many Beverley aircraft are now in service; and how far these aircraft are suitable for dropping parachute troops as well as for troop and freight transport.

The Secretary of State for Air (Mr. George Ward)

Twelve Beverleys are now in service. All are suitable for dropping parachute troops.

Major Wall

Can my right hon. Friend say whether in the recent operations in the Eastern Mediterranean these aircraft were used either for the dropping of parachute troops or for transport purposes?

Mr. Ward

May I have notice of that question?

Mr. de Freitas

Is the Secretary of State aware that, as long ago as 1953, we were told that in 1952 20 of these aircraft were ordered? What has happened to them? Surely they are needed today? Is not this another indication of the failure of the present Minister of Defence when he was Minister of Supply?

Mr. Ward

All the aircraft of the second squadron have been delivered and will come into service during next month, or as the crews are trained.

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