HC Deb 01 December 1942 vol 385 cc989-91
30. Commander Galbraith

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps have been taken towards remedying the serious situation arising out of the great scarcity of houses in Glasgow and, in particular, whether there have been any changes in housing policy, whether these have been indicated to the corporation of Glasgow and what is their nature?

Mr. Johnston

I have at all times done my utmost to assist local authorities to procure labour and materials, subject of course to war-time necessities, for the

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. T. Johnston)

With my hon. Friend's permission I will circulate in the OFFICIAL REPORT a table giving the figures required.

Mr. McNeil

As the figures will show that there are some less progressive authorities, does my right hon. Friend mean to renew his technical propaganda?

Mr. Johnston

Continual pressure is always being brought to bear upon authorities whose figures do not show well.

Mr. Mathers

As many of us are interested in authorities beyond those mentioned in the Question, when will my right hon. Friend issue a fresh statement, comparable with the one issued last year, covering all the authorities in Scotland?

Mr. Johnston

Perhaps my hon. Friend will consult with me on that. I do not know when the last census was taken.

Following is the table:

completion of all houses under construction at the outbreak of war. The Corporation of Glasgow have completed about 3,300 houses since the war began, including 976 built specially for transferred war workers and they have at present about 1,660 houses under construction. Recently I wrote to the Corporation renewing my offer of assistance. I also delegated to the Corporation power to requisition unoccupied houses, of which there are some hundreds in the city, and unoccupied shops and offices which could be adapted for housing. I informed the Corporation that the compensation payable in respect of the requisitioning and the cost of any necessary adaptations would be met in full by the Government. I also suggested to the Corporation that they should consider applying for my consent under Defence Regulation 68BB to the licensing of condemned houses in the city which may be capable of being repaired and otherwise made reasonably habitable as temporary war-time dwellings. I understand that my letter is now being considered by the Housing Committee.

Commander Galboraith

Is the Corporation of Glasgow now taking adequate measures to deal with the situation?

Mr. Johnston

Every local authority has had tremendous difficulties with labour and material. I am satisfied that they are doing their best.