HC Deb 18 October 1972 vol 843 cc243-4
7. Mr. Dalyell

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how much extra money has now been allocated to archaeology in the light of his latest policy; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Amery

I have provided a further £125,000 in England this year for emergency excavations in advance of development. This is nearly half as much again as the original allocation and the total is more than twice that for last year. I am glad to say that in consequence no work on important archaeological sites has to my knowledge been prejudiced by lack of finance.

Mr. Dalyell

Has this £125,000 been found from central Government sources, or is it a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul and doing it at the expense of excavation and consolidation of guardianship monuments?

Mr. Amery

I know how well informed the hon. Gentleman is on these matters. To the best of my knowledge it comes from central funds.

Dr. Stuttaford

How much archaeological experiment was carried out in New Palace Yard before the builders started excavating it?

Mr. Amery

I should like notice of a question as to the exact degree, but this point was uppermost in our minds. Indeed, I specifically asked that the greatest care should be taken not only to avoid any damage to local structures but to ensure that interesting evidence or discoveries would be recorded or preserved.