HC Deb 10 October 1944 vol 403 cc1557-8
34. Mr. E. J. Williams

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he will re- establish the practice of issuing permits and coupons for utility furniture from Assistance Board offices in South Wales, rather than Southport, to avoid errors and delay.

Mr. Dalton

These permits are issued, on my behalf, by the Assistance Board. In order to economise staff, this work has been centralised in London and Southport. Steps have recently been taken to speed up the issue of permits and to overtake the arrears.

40. Mr. Bossom

asked the President of the Board of Trade what action he is taking to ensure that there will be sufficient furniture available to supply both temporary and permanent post- war houses by the time they are ready.

Mr. Dalton

The number of firms making utility furniture is steadily increasing, and I look forward to a further rise in production, as more furniture makers are released from war contracts. I arm confident that there will be sufficient furniture for these new homes.

Mr. Bossom

Is the Minister aware that, as a result of the prefabrication system which has been adopted, there will be something between 4,000 and 4,500 houses a week coming into production; that they will require a lot of furniture, and that they will be useless unless my right hon. Friend has the furniture ready?

Mr. Dalton

I keep in close touch with the Ministers responsible for the housing programme, and I do not think that my section of production will lag behind theirs. I would also remind my hon. Friend that a lot of the furniture, particularly in prefabricated houses, will be built in, and I am very glad that this is so, and that this furniture will be provided by a different section of industry.

Mr. De la Bère

Is the Minister aware that the co-operative societies have a monopoly—[Interruption.]

Mr. George Griffiths

It is time they had.

Mr. De la Bère


Mr. Griffiths

Because they belong to the people.