HC Deb 20 December 1961 vol 651 c1336
13. Mr. C. Johnson

asked the Secretary of State for War in what circumstances, and for what purposes, military aircraft were using Yately Common in Hampshire on 26th October last.

Mr. Profumo

An official demonstration was held by the Household Brigade on 27th October, to explain to officers of the Brigade the importance of flying within the Army and to encourage them to learn to fly. There were lectures and films in the morning, and in the afternoon a flying demonstration was given on Blackbushe airfield.

Mr. Johnson

Is not the right hon. Gentleman aware that permission to use this common for flying purposes has been refused by the local authority and is the subject of appeal to the Minister? In those circumstances, does he think it right for the War Office to be allowed to flout the general law?

Mr. Profumo

I think it fair to say that the organisers of the demonstration were not aware of this controversy of the time, but I understand that Air Vice-Marshal Bennett is entitled to give permission for the use of his ground for flying provided that this does not extend to more than twenty-eight days in the year.