HC Deb 08 April 1941 vol 370 cc1394-5
51. Mr. Banfield

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the public interest on this point, he will make a statement as to the position of landlords under the War Damage Act, as to the passing on of the premium in the form of increased rent?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Sir Kingsley Wood)

Contributions under the War Damage Act are regarded as payments of a capital nature, and there is no provision enabling them to be passed on in the form of increased rent. In the case of long tenancies I would refer the hon. Member to the Fourth Schedule of the Act, which lays down the principles on which liability to contribution is to be shared between landlord and tenant. Tenants holding on a short tenancy, that is, on a lease granted for seven years or less, bear no share of the contribution, and during the currency of their leases are protected against any increase of rent by Section 34 of the Act. The majority of tenants are, of course, protected by the Rent Restrictions Acts which do not permit an increase of rent in respect of these contributions.

Mr. Banfield

Would the right hon. Gentleman inform me whether what he has just said applies to houses owned by local authorities, because in one instance at least a local authority has already placed this charge upon its tenants?

Sir K. Wood

If my hon. Friend will send me particulars of that case, or put them down in a Question, I will give a statement so far as local authority houses are concerned.