HC Deb 12 June 1913 vol 53 cc1787-8

asked the President of the Local Government Board whether his attention has been called to the public expression of opinion on the part of several leading scientists that the house-fly is the medium of conveyance of much infectious disease, especially in urban areas, and that the abatement of the prevalence of this insect pest can only be effected by the removal of stable manure kept in bins and of other similar garbage and filth which afford it suitable breeding places; and, if so, whether his Department propose to take any action in the matter?


Under the Public Health Acts, local authorities have powers with respect to the removal of refuse and for dealing with accumulations of manure and other offensive matters. They are also empowered to make bylaws relating to the deposit and removal of refuse matters, and by-laws of this kind are in force in many districts. The question of the relation between flies and disease has been frequently under the consideration of the Local Government Board, who have made and are continuing a series of investigations with regard to it. In August, 1911, in their circular to local authorities on the prevalence of epidemic diarrhœea amongst children, the Board emphasised the importance of prompt removal of stable and domestic refuse and the prevention of the accumulation of organic matters. I have reason to think that this circular led to much valuable work being done, and I am considering the question of issuing a further circular this summer.