HC Deb 04 June 1957 vol 571 cc1058-9
19. Mr. Edelman

asked the President of the Board of Trade what action he is taking, following the cancellation of Government military contracts, to draw the attention of industry to the productive capacity now available at Coventry and Ansty, which includes a large modern factory with new drawing offices and test beds; and what steps he is taking to encourage the use of this capacity for civilian purposes.

Mr. Erroll

I understand that the company which owns the capacity referred to is actively seeking other types of production to supplement the military work which it still has.

Mr. Edelman

In the meantime, is it not a terrible waste of national productive capacity? Cannot the Minister encourage other firms to come into that factory on a sub-letting basis in order to use the first-class machinery which is available? Have not the Government a plan, as the Labour Government had in 1945, for the tapering off of military production and for replacing it by civilian production?

Mr. Erroll

A privately-owned factory such as this is not available for the Government to offer to other tenants.