§ 18. Mr. Boston
asked the Minister of Technology if he will make a statement about his proposals for technocentres.
§ Mr. Fowler
I am discussing with the Council of Engineering Institutions and 420 local interests various suggestions for centres combining exhibition facilities and supporting activities designed to increase public awareness of the engineer's contribution to society and to attract more of our abler young people into the profession.
§ Mr. Boston
Does the hon. Gentleman accept that this is an imaginative concept? Where and when does he propose to start setting these up and with which local authorities and other bodies, apart from the one to which he referred, is he now having discussions?
§ Mr. Fowler
There have been discussions in a few places with local interests—local authorities, industry, education and so on—the purpose being to explore the possibility of incorporating a technocentre as part of some other local development, such as a town centre redevelopment or a conference centre. In the only cases in which discussions have proceeded beyond the first exchange of views, there has at present been no commitment from the central Government about finance. I cannot easily reveal where these discussions have taken place.