§ Mr. Churchill
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he has received an application for a licence authorising the removal of the remains of the late General Sikorski; what decision he has reached; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Whitelaw
I have received an application for a licence to remove the remains of General Sikorski, with the suggestion that the removal should be linked with the anniversary of his death on 4 July. Under section 25 of the Burial Act 1857 it is an offence, subject to exceptions, to remove any interred human remains without the licence of the Home Secretary and subject to such precautions as he may prescribe.
I have given full and careful consideration to all the issues involved in this case. I am unconvinced at the present time that the relevant criteria for meeting the application have yet been satisfied. I do not therefore propose to grant a licence to enable the remains of General Sikorski to be returned to Poland by 4 July. The applicant and the Polish Government are being informed of this.