HC Deb 29 October 1947 vol 443 cc845-6
13. Mr. Sidney Shephard

asked the Secretary of State for Air how many married quarters are at present under construction at R.A.F. Stations; and how many are intended for officers and other ranks, respectively.

Mr. A. Henderson

About 850 married quarters are now under construction at R.A.F. Stations at home; they are all for airmen. In addition, temporary married quarters are being constructed for 142 officers and 356 airmen.

Mr. Shephard

Would the Minister agree that the housing wants of married officers are just as great as those of married other ranks, and will not he allocate a proportion of these permanent houses to officers until such time as accommodation is built for the officers?

Mr. Henderson

As regards the first part of the supplementary question, I certainly agree that there is a problem with regard to the housing requirements of both officers and airmen, but the problem was very carefully considered, and it was decided at the beginning of the housing programme of the Air Ministry that the first houses built under it should be allocated to air men and not to officers I certainly assure the hon. Gentleman that it is the policy of my Department, so far as circumstances permit, to cater for the needs of both officers and airmen.

Mr. Hogg

Will the right hon. Gentleman, tell the House what is the number of applicants for married quarters on the special list, which, I understand, is kept in his Department, for cases of an exceptionally compassionate kind, and will he say how that number compares with the new construction?

Mr. Henderson

I cannot answer that question without notice.