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Space Vehicles

Volume 640: debated on Wednesday 10 May 1961

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asked the Secretary for Air what steps will be taken by the Royal Air Force to put vehicles into space.

The Royal Air Force is studying the possible military applications of space vehicles with close interest.

Will the Minister induce his Ministry to move rather faster than that, in view of its rather slow appreciation of the existence of space? Will he also bear in mind the fact that much of the American work on space has been done with Thor missiles, of which he has had about sixty at his disposal for several years?

I am aware of those facts, but I would remind the hon. Member that other of my right hon. Friends have an interest in these matters. On this occasion I shall confine myself to saying that the Royal Air Force and the Air Ministry are always forward-looking. We are always looking into the future, and we shall not neglect our responsibilities in this regard.

May we take it that the Ministry of Aviation and the Air Ministry are not waiting for each other to act, and doing nothing?

Will the Minister take a ride on the London Underground during a peak hour of travel and then consider whether putting space into vehicles should not have a higher priority?

I do not see the relevance of the hon. Member's supplementary question, except that it might have been asked with the intention of taking me for a ride.