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Advanced Training Aircraft

Volume 481: debated on Wednesday 22 November 1950

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asked the Secretary of State for Air what steps are being taken to provide advanced types of training aircraft for the reserve flying schools.

The supply of advanced training aircraft is at present fully absorbed by the requirements of the regular flying training schools, the number of which is being increased. When their requirements have been met the question of allotting more advanced aircraft to reserve flying schools will be reconsidered. Opportunities are, however, given to members of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve to carry out their annual training in operational commands, where they are given experience on operational aircraft.

Do I understand from that reply that the position is actually no better than it was when I first raised this point in March last? Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman bear in mind that before the last war we had at least three front line types of aeroplane in reserve schools, and could he take steps to get even Harvard trainers over here in reserve schools?

Yes, I will certainly consider the question of Harvards, but I would also remind the noble Lord that the question was raised in July this year when I pointed out that the Balliol was just beginning to come off the production lines. It will not, however, come off in any quantity until next year and, in consequence, we must give priority in these circumstances to the regular flying schools.