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Aircraft, Transport Command

Volume 656: debated on Wednesday 28 March 1962

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asked the Secretary of State for Air if he will give the types and numbers of aircraft on order for Transport Command and the dates on which he expects to have them available for service.

I would refer the hon. Member to the information in the Air Estimates Memorandum and to the speech of my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State in the debate on 12th March.

With respect, that information is not nearly as full as the information about V-Bomber Command which Mr. Pincher had made available to him. Cannot we have the dates when the Air Force expects to get into service some of these transport aircraft which are on order? Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us something about the Belfasts and when they will be in service—all ten of them—because there is great concern about this lack of a strategic air freighter and we want to know what the right hon. Gentleman is doing about it.

I understand, appreciate and share the hon. Gentleman's concern about the heavy freighters and the need to have them in service as soon as possible, but I think it would be unwise to go beyond what I have said previously; that we expect to have ten Belfasts in the mid-1960s.