HC Deb 16 May 1938 vol 336 cc31-2
62. Mr. MacLaren

asked the Minister of Health what action he proposes to take to save the coastline from disfigurement by bungalow development and to prohibit sales of foreshore to speculators?

Sir K. Wood

Local authorities have power under the Planning Act to control development along the sea coast, but if the hon. Member will inform me of any particular area which he has in mind I will look into the position.

Mr. MacLaren

I will forward to my right hon. Friend the information that I have. Arising out of his reply, may I say that I hope the Minister will take action, as this matter amounts to a public scandal?

Miss Rathbone

Will the Minister issue some report showing which local authorities, or what proportion of local authorities, are making use of their powers in this respect?

Sir K. Wood

I believe that information is in the annual report of the Ministry, but I will take note of the hon. Lady's question.

Mr. Noel-Baker

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the advisability of making inquiry into the working of the Planning Act, which is almost universally inoperative?

Sir K. Wood

I cannot assent to that suggestion for a moment. A great deal has been done under the Act, and I think due credit ought to be given to those authorities, especially the joint authorities, which have done such good work. I should like to see more work done, but I do not think it is fair to suggest that a good deal has not already been done.

Sir P. Harris

Will the right hon. Gentleman put more driving force into this Act, and use some of his publicity gifts?

Mr. H. G. Williams

Does the foreshore which is under the sea for 12 hours out of the 24, come under town planning?

Sir K. Wood

I will examine that very carefully.

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