HC Deb 05 June 1947 vol 438 c372
32. Lieut.-Colonel Hamilton

asked the Minister of Health, in regard to the selection of a site for new council houses in Kedington village, at what date was the site selected; and when the Kedington Parish Council was consulted or given an opportunity of making comments or suggestions.

Mr. Bevan

I understand that the Council's decision to purchase this site was made on 12th May, 1944, and that there was no formal consultation with the Kedington Parish Council.

Lieut.-Colonel Hamilton

Is the Minister aware that great concern was caused to the inhabitants of Kedington village when they discovered that this decision had been made some two years previously without their knowledge, especially as they preferred other sites; and, although there is no legal obligation on district councils to consult parish councils in such matters, does not the Minister consider that in the interests of local democracy it is highly desirable that they should make that a practice?

Mr. Bevan

Parish councils are usually aware of what sites are proposed to be acquired and what sites are not to be acquired in their parishes. In this case the negotiations with the landowner ran for a period of two years and I would be really astonished to learn that negotiations over so long a period of time were not made known to the parish council.

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