HC Deb 10 December 1935 vol 307 cc726-7
35. Mr. GUY

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he can make a statement as to the progress of slum clearance in Scotland?


In 1933 local authorities estimated that 61,943 houses were required to replace slum dwellings and they undertook to build if possible approximately 90 per cent. of that number in the five year period 1939–1938. With less than two years of that period elapsed, contracts have been placed for 34,824 houses, or 56 per cent. of the estimated requirements, and at 31st October last 15,125 houses, or 24 per cent. of the total estimated needs, had been completed. The output of new houses for the accommodation of tenants displaced from unfit houses was in 1933 7,199, in 1934 8,598, and for the first 10 months of this year 11,662. In the light of this increasing rate of progress it is possible to visualise the disappearance of the slums in Scotland by 31st December, 1938, and I will continue to keep a close watch upon the efforts of local authorities to achieve that most desirable object.


Will the right hon. Gentleman press local authorities to accelerate the demolition of condemned and empty houses so that there may be more rapid progress with the re-housing of the cleared sites?


On the figures I have given the hon. Gentleman must realise that the local authorities have put their heart and soul into the matter.


Is it not the case that it is always slums in towns and cities that are under consideration, and that there are no proposals for the complete reconstruction of mining villages?


That is a matter for statutory revision by a committee that we are shortly appointing under the 1935 Housing Act.