§ 9. Mr. Spence
asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation on what date Dyce Airport and the interests of E. L. Gandar Dower, Allied Airways (Gandar Dower), Limited, Aberdeen Flying School, Limited, Aberdeen Flying Club, Limited, and Aberdeen Aerodrome Fuel Supplies, Limited, were requisitioned; and if he is aware that no provision has been made for compensation for loss of profit, loss of goodwill and amortisation of leases.
§ The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation (Mr. Airey Neave)
These requisitions took place on 13th October, 1939. If Mr. Gandar Dower considers that he is entitled to compensation under these or any other heads my Department will, of course, consider any representations he may make. So far, in spite of pressure from my Department, he has failed to state a detailed claim.
§ Mr. Spence
Does my hon. Friend appreciate that what he has just said means that his Ministry is continuing to hold, under harsh wartime regulation terms, private property for the benefit of his Ministry and to the detriment of the private individual concerned?
§ 10. Mr. Spence
asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether he is aware that compensation is being paid to companies requisitioned at Dyce Airport, under the Compensation (Defence) Act, 1939; and what machinery exists for relating such compensation to the purchasing of the £ sterling at current date compared with the £ sterling in 1939.
§ Mr. Neave
Yes, Sir. The compensation rentals being paid to these companies were awarded by the general claims tribunal under the provisions of the Compensation (Defence) Act, 1939. There is no statutory provision for the continuous re-assessment of compensation rentals in relation to the purchasing power of the £ sterling.
§ 11. Mr. Spence
asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether he is aware that Mr. E. L. Gandar Dower and the directors of Allied Airways (Gandar Dower), Limited, Aberdeen Flying School, Limited, Aberdeen Flying Club, Limited, and Aberdeen Aerodrome Fuel Supplies, Limited, were invited by his Department to discuss problems at St. Andrew's, Scotland, in August, 1949; that a full questionnaire was submitted and answers requested; that no replies have been received; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Neave
Mr. Gandar Dower has been in touch with my Department fairly continuously over the past ten years. As far as I know, all Mr. Gandar Dower's questions have been answered during that period.
My right hon. Friend and his predecessors have been ready for a very long time to acquire Mr. Gandar Dower's interests at Dyce. If only he will either submit a claim himself or appoint agents to negotiate on his behalf, I see no reason why this should not be concluded soon.
§ Mr. Spence
Is my hon. Friend aware that the failure on this occasion to reach any finality was due to the Minister's failure to reply to a questionnaire which was prepared on agreed terms of reference? I have seen the letter of invitation and the terms of reference and the questionnaire. Will the Minister now consider looking at the questionnaire and sending a full answer?
§ Mr. Neave
I have certainly seen the questionnaire. My understanding is that all those matters have been answered in the interviews that Mr. Gandar Dower has had with my Department. I would suggest, however, that if he were prepared to come along and have a further discussion, there is a good chance of a settlement.