HC Deb 25 April 1950 vol 474 cc768-9
35. Sir D. Robertson

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland why housing improvement grants under the Agricultural (Scotland) Act, 1948, are restricted to a maximum of £250 whereas similar improvements made under the Housing (Scotland) Act, 1949, qualify for a grant up to £300.

Mr. McNeil

Grants for improvements to housing under Section 77 of the Agriculture (Scotland) Act, 1948, are made on the cost of materials and skilled labour. Grants under the Housing (Scotland) Act, 1949, are made on the full cost.

Sir D. Robertson

Why should there be this difference between the improvements to houses of citizens? Is the agricultural worker and crofter and farmer not entitled to exactly the same kind of grant as any other citizen? Does the right hon. Gentleman realise that his own Department, because of the injustice of this lesser allowance, is trying to get round the Act and to give crofters and others a chance of getting £300?

Mr. McNeil

I am not aware of that. The difference is due to a fact which I have previously explained to the hon. Gentleman, which is that in the crofting communities, with which I am glad he is now making some acquaintance, the normal procedure has been for the crofter to make the major part of the construction himself.