§ 43. Mr. McMaster
asked the Minister of Aviation what progress has been made in the evaluation of the system of multi-jet vertical take-off and landing pioneered by Short Brothers and Harland in the SC1.
§ Mr. Marten
I refer my hon. Friend to the Answers given on 19th November, 1962 and 25th February last. As he will also have noted from my right hon. Friend's statement of 5th March, one of the reasons for choosing the AW681 as a basis for the Hastings/Beverley replacement is its potential for conversion to V.T.O.L. capability by this system, if it should be required.
§ Mr. McMaster
In view of the know-how which Short Bros. and Harland has in this work, which leads the world, will my hon. Friend consider expediting this matter, which, as he himself has said, has gone on since November, 1962, or, in fact, earlier, and developing or purchasing some other transport aircraft in order to experiment with the application of multi-jet vertical take-off and landing in anticipation of the 681 project?
§ Mr. Marten
This programme of research with the SC1 which we are pursuing is of a general and continuing nature and it is not related solely to multi-jet V.T.O.L. There is at present no firm requirement to give the AW 681 itself a V.T.O.L. capability.