§ Lieut.-Colonel HURST
asked the First Commissioner of Works how much public money was expended upon the Alexandra Park Aerodrome, Manchester, and if it is now unoccupied; whether this building and the Government's unoccupied tank sheds at Trafford Park were considered as potential storage accommodation for stationery before the purchase of premises at Hollinwood for £185,000; and whether any local experts were consulted as to the purchase?
§ Sir A. MOND
I am unable to furnish information as to the expenditure incurred on the Alexandra Park aerodrome as these buildings were erected by the Air Ministry. I understand that the hutments are occupied at present as police barracks. These buildings, among others, were considered as possible premises for the Stationery Office, but were rejected as quite unsuitable owing to their nature and construction. Presumably the tank sheds referred to are the tractor sheds, Nos. 1 and, Trafford Park. These premises were inspected and would have been suitable as Stationery Office premises but they could not be secured as they were required for storage of goods in transit. Before an agreement was made to lease the Hollinwood factory, my technical advisers satisfied themselves that the value of the property was considerably in excess of the price agreed to be paid.
§ Major NALL
asked the First Commissioner of Works what is the total superficial floor space of the Hollinwood 1838W Stationery Department near Manchester; what is the area of land occupied by the premises; and on what authority were they purchased before the Vote had been submitted to Parliament?
§ Sir A. MOND
The total site area of the property proposed to be acquired for the Stationery Department is 16¾ acres, of which about 7½ acres are built on. The area of the warehouse accommodation is approximately 300,000 feet superficial, all on one floor. There is a separate canteen block with 30,000 feet superficial and an office block with 10,000 feet superficial on two floors. Pending Parliamentary sanction the property has not been purchased for the Stationery Office, but taken with Treasury sanction on short lease at a rent of £12,000 per annum.