HC Deb 18 July 1977 vol 935 cc1138-9
18. Mr. Madden

asked the Secretary of State for Industry what action is being taken to secure industrial development in West Yorkshire, especially in those areas where the operation of the wool textile scheme has created redundancies.

Mr. Cryer

In addition to the financial incentives to industrial investment on offer because West Yorkshire is an intermediate area, the construction of 36 advance factories has been approved since November 1974.

Mr. Madden

Is my hon. Friend aware that the Yorkshire and Humberside Economic Planning Council's strategy review for the region calls upon the Government to undertake a coherent strategy for West Yorkshire? Does he believe that the Department's present strategy for West Yorkshire, especially Calderdale and Kirk-lees, constitutes a coherent policy?

Mr. Cryer

Yes, I do. The Department is expressing concern about the position in Yorkshire and Humberside. As I have indicated in previous answers, we have made positive attempts to remedy the serious unemployment that occurs in pockets within the West Yorkshire area.

As a West Yorkshire MP representing Keighley, I know only too well the sort of problem that my hon. Friend has outlined. He knows that following his representations I went to the area and discussed the question of the particular problems associated with the narrow Pennine valleys. The Department of Industry, through the English Industrial Estates Corporation, in conjunction with Calderdale, is to embark on a study of converting old factories into modern ones. I am sure that that is the sort of industrial regeneration that will have beneficial effects for the future.