§ MR. SCHWANN (Manchester, N.)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether his attention has been drawn to the present condition of cottages in the rural district of Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, in spite of 1027 two Government inspections in 1896 and 1899; is he aware that an expert inspection was recently conducted by the Rural Housing and Sanitation Association owing to complaints made in the district, that the report on the condition of cottages in Beeston, Sandy, was sent to the Rural District Council, which met at Biggleswade on 22nd May, but was not considered; and whether, in view of the inspector's remarks on the condition of cottages in this district, will he say what action the Department will now take in the matter.
§ THE PRESIDENT OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD (Mr. WALTER LONG,) Bristol, S.
I have seen a report made on behalf of the Association as to the condition of certain cottages in the village of Beeston. I am informed by the clerk to the Rural District Council that the question of the sanitation of the cottages on Beeston Green has been under the consideration of the Council from time to time for many years past, and that various works have been carried out to endeavour to improve the sanitation of the district. The clerk states that inconsequence of the report referred to the inspector of nuisances was instructed to give the matter his attention. It appears that thereupon he communicated with the two owners of the property in question, and that one owner has since arranged for the repair of the cottages belonging to him. The other owner, who lives at a distance, has not replied, and a further notice has been sent to him. The matter is receiving the attention of the Council, and it does not seem to me to be necessary that any action should be taken by me at the present time.
§ MR. SCHWANN
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the clerk to the District Council is agent for several owners in the neighbourhood?
§ MR. WALTER LONG
I have had some general information as to the local circumstances, but I think the hon. Gentleman must take my answer as conclusive. I cannot go further at present.