§ Mr. HOLMES
asked the Minister of Transport whether a proposal has been received from the South Metropolitan Electric Light and Power Company with respect to the erection of a power station at Erith; what is the present kilowatt capacity of the company's existing station and what is the present demand thereon;. whether this company is a subsidiary company of the County of London Electric Supply Company which is also seeking to erect a new power station at Barking; and whether he is taking steps to prevent consent being given to any schemes which would prejudice the whole position of the electricity authority for London shortly to be set up under the 1919 Act?
§ Mr. NEAL
A proposal has been received from the West Kent Electric Company, Limited, not the South Metropolitan Electric Light and Power 601W Company. These two companies are, it is understood, closely associated. No decision has been given in regard to the application. The West Kent Company have not a generating station, but the kilowatt capacity of the South Metropolitan Company's station on 31st December, 1919, was 19,500 k.w., and no extensions have been since sanctioned by the Electricity Commissioners; the maximum demand recorded for the year ending 31st December, 1919, was 7,900 k.w. It is hardly correct to describe either of these companies as a subsidiary company of the County of London Electric Supply Company, but it is understood that a certain amount of their capital is held by the latter company. The Electricity Commissioners are fully alive to (he necessity for avoiding taking any action which would prejudice the setting up of a joint electricity authority for Greater London.
§ Mr. HOLMES
asked the Minister of Transport whether an application was received in the early part of this year from the County of London Electric Supply Company for consent to erect a power station at Barking capable of expansion to 600,000 kilowatts; whether the proposal was opposed by the London County Council, the local authorities, and by the majority of the London companies, who asked for an inquiry on the ground that the proposal would prejudice the position and work of the electricity authority for London to be set up hereafter; whether an inquiry has been held; and what was the result?
§ Mr. NEAL
The answers to the various questions raised by the hon. Member are in the affirmative. The inquiry was held by the Electricity Commissioners on 6th October to 9th October. Important questions of law and policy are involved to which the Commissioners must give careful consideration before arriving at a decision.