HC Deb 13 April 1948 vol 449 cc60-2W
63. Sir W. Smithers

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in the requested appropriations for Marshall Aid from 1st April now being drafted, he will include specifically for the building industry at least a further £5 million above the present allowance for timber to augment the inadequate housing programme; or what figure he proposes to include for building timber and whether this will result in increased supplies being made available for house-building.

Mr. Belcher

The amount of timber available for the building industry must depend on the total supplies of timber obtainable from all sources, of which timber covered by appropriations from Marshall Aid can only be a part. The amount of timber to be imported from the Western Hemisphere during the early months of the European Recovery Programme is at present being examined by His Majesty's Government and the United States authorities, and until this examination is completed it is impossible to say what the supplies will be.

Mr. Vane

asked the President of the Board of Trade, on what grounds the Assistant Area Officer, Area 8 of Timber Control, Bristol, has refused to allow Messrs. Venables, of Stafford, to tender for a parcel of timber to be sold by the Tewkesbury Park Estate through the Home-Grown Timber Marketing Association.

Mr. H. Wilson

In issuing licences to sell and fell trees the Timber Control has regard to the location of the applicants and their stocks and outstanding purchases of round timber. A licence was originally refused to Messrs. Venables on the ground that their stocks did not justify acquisition by them in a distant area where local sawmills were going short, but after discussion a licence was issued on 18th February on the understanding that a proportion of the timber produced would be made available to the local sawmills.

Mr. Walker-Smith

asked the President of the Board of Trade what co-ordination exists between Government Departments concerned to ensure that tree felling is planned and executed with maximum reasonable regard to protection of woodlands and amenity.

Mr. H. Wilson

The Board of Trade, which is responsible for the control of felling, keeps in close touch with the Forestry Commission and the Ministry of Town and Country Planning on matters of common interest. All applications to fell in excess of 25,000 cubic feet are referred to the Forestry Commission for approval before a licence is issued; and areas covered by Tree Preservation Orders are notified to the Timber Control by the Ministry of Town and Country Planning.