HC Deb 04 December 1941 vol 376 cc1242-3
25. Mr. S. O. Davies

asked the Home Secretary the properties scheduled by the Welsh Church Commissioners for transfer from them to the county borough of Merthyr Tydfil, under the Welsh Church Act, the gross revenue therefrom, and the net sum received by the Commissioners for the year 1940 after the deduction of outgoings in respect of repairs and management for the period?

Mr. H. Morrison

As the answer is rather involved, and contains a number of figures, I will, with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Mr. Davies

While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his reply, might I ask whether he is aware that a considerable portion of these properties have fallen into extreme disrepair and are unfit for human habitation; and will he take steps to see that they are immediately transferred to their rightful owners, the local authority?

Mr. Morrison

I am very anxious to get this matter completed as soon as possible, and I will keep in mind what my hon. Friend has said.

Colonel Arthur Evans

Will my right hon. Friend consider at the same time that the Welsh Church Commissioners have approximately £1,750,000 of public money, invested in Government funds, available, which should be distributed to certain county and borough councils and also to the University of Wales, and which has been unnecessarily held by the Commissioners for many years? Will he take what steps he can to see that this money is released at the earliest possible moment, so that schemes can be prepared and submitted to him, under the terms of the Act?

Mr. Morrison

Yes, Sir; I will keep that in mind.

Following is the answer: The properties scheduled for transfer to the Council of the County Borough of Merthyr Tydfil pursuant to Section 8 (1) of the Welsh Church Act, 1914, so far as they relate to the landed estates, comprise cottage properties, shop and office properties, premises used for various trade, commercial and amusement purposes, licensed premises, unbuilt-on-land, and allotment gardens. A provisional schedule of the landed estates of a total area of approximately 10½ acres together with large scale maps showing the dispositions and outlines of the various properties were forwarded to the Town Clerk of Merthyr Tydfil on 9th April, 1940. These estates produce a gross annual revenue, including ground rents and rack rents, of £5,125. The net sum received therefrom for the year ended 31st December, 1940, after deducting Schedule A Tax, rates, repairs, encumbrances, and cost of collection, is £2,593. A sum of £1,895 is ultimately recoverable in addition in respect of Schedule A Tax.