§ Dr. David Clark
To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, pursuant to the answer of 29 December 1987, why in the light of the fact that his Department first became aware on 30 June 1986 of the high level of rainfall over west Yorkshire following the Chernobyl accident, no intensive monitoring of sheep for radioactivity was undertaken in the Skipton area until November 1987; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Donald Thompson
As I said in my replies to the hon. Member on 29 January 1988,Official Report, column 421, and 10 February, Official Report, column 240, the significance of receipt of rainfall data from the Meteorological Office was superseded by the use of results of surveys of actual deposition and of monitoring. These did not indicate any need for intensive activity in 728W Yorkshire. The activity that was undertaken in November 1987 was in response to local public concern following local newspaper reports. Although that exercise did result in the detection of marginally elevated levels in two sheep at one location on the moorland near Skipton, it also confirmed the earlier conclusion that there was no unacceptable risks to food supplies in west Yorkshire as a result of the Chernobyl fall-out.