HC Deb 12 July 1961 vol 644 cc382-3
26. Mr. Lipton

asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty when the new chief of security in his Department will be appointed.

Mr. C. Ian Orr-Ewing

My noble Friend hopes to make an announcement before the House rises for the Summer Recess.

Mr. Lipton

In view of the urgent need for effective control of naval security, will the Civil Lord hasten the appointment of a competent person? Will he see that whoever is appointed is not just an ordinary civil servant or a "brass hat" on the verge of retirement, but someone who has some experience of security methods?

Mr. Orr-Ewing

I can assure the hon. Gentleman that my noble Friend is aware, as I am, of the need to have the best possible man for this very important job.

Mr. Dugdale

Is the hon. Gentleman satisfied with the Admiralty's security arrangements in view of the fact that yet another Admiralty official was arrested yesterday, according to the Press, and charged under the Official Secrets Act?

Mr. Orr-Ewing

I am not responsible for reports in the Press, but I can say that the report this morning that a security leakage involving top secret experimental work on nuclear-powered submarines is being investigated is completely untrue; and most of the statements in the rest of the article have no foundation.

Several Hon. Members rose

Mr. Speaker

Order. We cannot discuss this. It is sub judice.

Mr. Lipton

Will the Civil Lord see that the person who is appointed is someone who has previous experience of security work?

Mr. Orr-Ewing

That will be a major consideration.