asked the Minister of Agriculture what steps are being taken by the Lancashire agricultural executive committee to protect poultry farmers in the neighbourhood of Ramsbottom from the depredations of foxes.
In order to encourage farmers to combine for the purpose of fox destruction, the executive committee have furnished the Lancashire county branch of the National Farmers' Union with particulars of the approved organisation for fox destruction societies and of the financial assistance which is available. Such societies have already been formed in the Rochdale and Nelson areas but no request for assistance has been received from the Bury area. The county agricultural executive committee propose, however, to arrange a meeting with the interests concerned to consider the formation of a similar society in that area.
In view of my hon. Friend's statement that no complaint has been received from this area, will he perhaps consult the files of his Department and refer to a letter which I sent to the Minister about a fortnight ago?
The hon. Gentleman should listen to the reply. What I said was that no request for assistance has been received from the area.