HC Deb 24 November 1965 vol 721 c501
28. Sir J. Eden

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether firm production orders for the Kestrel and the Maritime Comet have now been placed.

Mr. Healey

No, Sir.

Sir J. Eden

When is the right hon. Gentleman going to end the uncertainty surrounding the future of these two projects? Is it not a fact that, in spite of the atmosphere of urgency which the Government generated in their first Defence White Paper, they have not yet placed a production order on a long-term basis for a single new military aircraft?

Mr. Healey

In fact, as the hon. Gentleman will know, production orders are placed when a large amount of preliminary work has been done. The programme for the preliminary work is proceeding according to plan, and there is no question whatever of any possible delay in the delivery of these aircraft to tine R.A.F. when they are needed.