§ Mr. Proudfoot
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement about the British Waterways Board's proposed scheme to enlarge its Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation.33W
§ Mr. Rippon
I have told the British Waterways Board that I am unable to authorise expenditure on this scheme at present. I intend, however, to consult further with the various interests concerned in the area to see whether the widespread desire for the scheme can be reflected to a greater extent in ways that would ensure adequate financial benefits. Meanwhile, so as to avoid unnecessary delay in the event of my being able subsequently to authorise the scheme, but without prejudice to its financing, I have given my consent to the board's seeking enabling powers to carry it out.