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Service Department Land (Transfers)

Volume 529: debated on Thursday 1 July 1954

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15.

asked the Minister of Agriculture how many acres of land acquired by purchase or rented for war purposes by Service Departments have since been transferred to the Land Commission or Commissioners of Crown Lands.

At 31st March, this year, about 26,300 acres of such land were under the control of the Agricultural Land Commission and 964 acres have been acquired by the Commissioners of Crown Lands.

Does my right hon. Friend contemplate any increase in the amount of land to be purchased by the Commissioners of Crown Lands?

The Commissioners of Crown Lands are ready buyers and ready sellers. There is no question at all of any influence one way or the other upon them by this House or anybody else.

16.

asked the Minister of Agriculture what circumstances are necessary to decide that land held by Service Departments should be transferred to the Land Commissioner or Commissioners of Crown Lands instead of being sold to previous owners or submitted to public auction.

My hon. Friend may be under a misapprehension about the Commissioners of Crown Lands. The Commissioners are willing to consider the purchase of suitable properties, but there is no question of the transfer without purchase to them of land held by Service Departments. On the matter of policy I would ask my hon. Friend to await the statement I shall be making in the forthcoming debate.