HC Deb 23 March 1950 vol 472 cc2151-2
39. Mr. Profumo

asked the Minister of Health what proportion of the £15,000,000 granted under the Rural Water Supplies and Sewerage Act, 1944, has so far been allocated to local authorities towards the capital cost of providing piped water supplies in rural areas; and whether he will make more speedy use of the remainder of this sum for these purposes

Mr. Bevan

I have allocated grants amounting to £5,709,000 towards the cost of providing piped water supplies in rural areas, and £4,130,000 for sewerage and sewage disposal. Applications for grant in aid of further schemes estimated to cost £16,846,000 have been submitted and will be dealt with as soon as possible.

Mr. Profumo

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that his answer is a rather poor commentary on the achievements of the Government in this very vital field? Is he further aware that if he could persuade his colleagues not to export so many pipes he might be able to get more speedy financial help to enable this important work to be carried out?

Mr. Bevan

The achievements of the Government in this field in the last 4½ years compare very favourably with those of the previous 30 years.

Squadron-Leader A. E. Cooper

Is the Minister aware that the information he has given to the House is not in accordance with information recently given to the House by the Minister of Agriculture?

Mr. Turton

Can the Minister say what proportion of this grant has actually been paid to the local authorities?

Mr. Bevan

Not without notice.