HC Deb 15 April 1958 vol 586 cc25-6
43. Mr. Emrys Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is aware of the concern recently expressed by the Ayrshire Branch of the National Farmers' Union over the action of the Ayrshire landlord in taking over the land of a farmer in Ayrshire without giving reasonable notice; and what administrative steps he intends taking to prevent landlords taking over good agricultural land improved by the tenant and using it for purposes which will not increase food production.

Mr. Maclay

I have seen Press reports about the matter referred to in the first part of the Question. With regard to the second part of the Question, resumption is a matter between landlord and tenant and is governed by the terms of the lease of the farm and the provisions of the Agricultural Holdings (Scotland) Act,1949.

Mr. Hughes

Does not the Secretary of State agree that it is unfortunate that good agricultural land, on which much labour has been expended, should be taken away for the planting of trees, and is it not very unfortunate that the landlord happens to be a member of Her Majesty's Government?

Mr. Maclay

These matters are governed by the conditions of lease. On the specific case to which the hon. Gentleman refers, the matter has been before the court, and I do not think that it would be proper for me to comment on it.