§ 7. Mr. Marples
asked the Minister of Health what modifications in the housing programme he proposes to make; and if he will make a full statement.
§ 11. Sir Waldron Smithers
asked the Minister of Health whether his new regulations to stop all new house building apply to the Stevenage satellite towns.
§ Mr. Marples
Does the right hon. Gentleman realise that when building recommences—it should be "commences" instead of "recommences"—it will be necessary to have a nucleus of trained workers, and unless a very much more comprehensive statement can be given to the public and to the trade there will simply not be a building industry to be called upon?
§ Mr. Bevan
The hon. Gentleman has not yet seen the circular to which I have referred and I would advise a study of it before he reaches any conclusion. There are 350,000 houses already under construction and under contract and that will be sufficient to keep the building industry occupied for a little while to come. As he will have seen from the statement of my right hon. Friend the 1059 Minister for Economic Affairs, the whole position will be reviewed in the early summer of next year.
§ Sir W. Smithers
Can the right hon. Gentleman say why priority is given to the ill-advised Socialist Stevenage scheme and, if it has been given, will he also say, as regards farm cottages, why priority over them has been given to the Stevenage scheme? He has not answered my Question.
§ Sir W. Smithers
On a point of Order. I would ask you, Mr. Speaker, whether you are aware that I did not expect to get a silk purse out of a sow's ear?
Mr. E. P. Smith
Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that the provision of houses is a very essential capital expenditure?
§ Commander Galbraith
Can the right hon. Gentleman say how many of the 350,000 houses of which he has spoken are permanent houses?
§ Mr. Dumpleton
Will the Minister impress on his colleagues in the Cabinet that there should be no curtailment of the housing programme whatever else may happen, because it would cause widespread resentment and injury?
§ Mr. Walker-Smith
Will the Minister tell the House whether or not he still adheres to the view he expressed to the House on 28th July that any reduction in the housing programme will gravely jeopardise national progress?