HC Deb 25 February 1957 vol 565 cc837-8
15. Mr. Ernest Davies

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in what way he has secured a better supply of official news and information to the British Broadcasting Corporation; and what administrative machinery he employs for this purpose.

Dr. Hill

The channels for the flow of information between Government Departments and the B.B.C. have not been altered by my co-ordinating functions, and I do not propose to alter them or to add to them. I explained on 18th February in reply to the hon. Gentlemen the Members for Northfield (Mr. Chapman) and for Rossendale (Mr. Anthony Greenwood) the main methods I am employing to secure better coordination of Government information services in general.

Mr. Davies

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the House will be relieved at that reply, because last week did not he give the impression that he was seeking ways in which to increase the flow of official news to the B.B.C.? Did not he perhaps give the impression that these channels were not adequate and that the B.B.C. was not doing the task adequately?

Dr. Hill

I sought to say quite frankly to the House last week, as I do today, that I am not seeking to create new channels with the B.B.C., or in any other direction, but merely to secure a speedier issue of Government information.

Mr. Chetwynd

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that, in addition to all these weighty matters, he has a responsibility for a swannery at Crewe Hall, Pool and that when my right hon. Friend the Member for Bishop Auckland (Mr. Dalton) was Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster he erected a barbed wire fence to keep the swans in? Does the right hon. Gentleman think that he will have time to go and see whether the fence is still in existence?

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