HC Deb 07 May 1941 vol 371 cc832-3
12. General Sir George Jeffreys

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware that requisitioning of country houses for the use of Admiralty personnel has recently been carried out on a considerable scale; that the occupants and their families have been required to vacate their houses at such short notice as to allow them little opportunity to arrange for accommodation for themselves, their families and their furniture; and whether, as the normal camping season has now commenced, the personnel in question could not be accommodated in tents or huts so as to avoid causing hardship of this description?

The Civil Lord of the Admiralty (Captain Austin Hudson)

Relatively few country houses have been requisitioned by the Admiralty for any purpose and only a very small number for the purpose of housing personnel. Whenever private houses of any class have to be requisitioned, particular care is taken to see that the occupants have other accommodation to go to, and such assistance as they may need is given to them in making arrangements for the removal and storage of their furniture.

Sir G. Jeffreys

Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that adequate notice has not been given in certain cases, of which I am prepared to give particulars, and will he answer the Question whether use cannot be made, especially at this season of the year, of camps?

Captain Hudson

I should be very glad if my hon. and gallant Friend would give me particulars of the cases that he has in mind. I can assure him that we are using camps.

Sir William Davison

Is my hon. and gallant Friend aware of the great desirability of co-ordination in some way in the matter of this wholesale requisitioning of houses, many of them occupied by elderly people who have been removed from London and elsewhere? Is it not desirable to have some central Department to deal with the matter?

Captain Hudson

There is co-ordination at present.