HC Deb 08 May 1950 vol 475 c12
16. Mr. Keenan

asked the Minister of Works why contractors on house building in the northern area of Liverpool are having difficulties in obtaining supplies of bricks.

Mr. Stokes

I do not know of any particular difficulty. Brick production in West Lancashire increased by nearly 3.7 millions during March, and at the beginning of April there were unsold stocks in West Lancashire of 680,000 facing bricks and nearly 8 million common bricks.

Mr. Keenan

Is the Minister aware that, in Bootle and Liverpool particularly, house building is being held up because the contractors are not able to get supplies, as I personally know, and that the assertion is made in the locality—and I think there is some truth in it—that the bricks, instead of going for house building to the local contractors, are going for commercial and entertainment building purposes, which has caused the trade and the corporation——

Mr. Speaker

This Question deals only with the shortage of bricks.

Mr. Stokes

If the hon. Gentleman will send me particulars, I will have them looked into at once. The bricks are there, but there is something wrong with their distribution.

Mrs. Braddock

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, on Friday last, I rang up his Department in London with a complaint that housing schemes were being held up in Liverpool because of the shortage of bricks and cement? Has his Department reported that conversation to him?

Mr. Stokes

Yes, that conversation has been reported to me, and action has been taken.