HC Deb 23 October 1950 vol 478 c2478
42. Mr. Alport

asked the Minister of Works whether he will make a statement regarding the policy at present being pursued by his Department, with regard to the removal of concrete and other obstructions remaining on private land; and what steps he intends to take to ensure the speedy removal of these obstructions, or the payment of adequate compensation to the owners concerned.

Mr. Stokes

When it is in the public interest that war works should be removed from private land, it is the practice for my Department to make the necessary arrangements either directly before the de-requisitioning of the land or by a contribution to the owner in accordance with Section 52 of the Requisitioned Land and War Works Act, 1945. The work is done as quickly as possible but there are many competing claims for such plant and labour as can be made available, and I am not in a position to promise a general acceleration of the programme.

Mr. Alport

May I ask how the right hon. Gentleman defines public interest in connection with this matter?

Mr. Stokes

That must be a matter of opinion, but I can assure the hon. Member that I am in full sympathy with the intention of his Question and that I am doing my best.