HC Deb 25 January 1951 vol 483 cc285-6
22. Mr. Digby

asked the Minister of Health whether he has considered the statement in the annual report of the county medical officer for Dorset that in many areas the housing situation has worsened rather than improved; that this continued acute shortage of houses is having a profound effect on the health and general well-being of the community; and whether he will either increase the allocation of new houses to Dorset or review the facilities for repair and improvement of existing houses.

Mr. Dalton

The answer to the first part of the Question is "Yes": I have asked my regional officer to confer with the local housing authorities in Dorset on this matter.

Mr. Digby

Does not the report of this offer show the importance of carrying on with repairs, and will the Minister look into the whole question of repairing existing properties?

Mr. Dalton

My regional officer is to confer with the authorities, and will report to me when he has done so.

Mr. Awbery

Can the Minister tell us if the Dorset County Council is governed by a Tory majority, and, if so, whether that is the cause of the lack of progress?

Mr. Dalton

I have not had time to investigate these details.

Mr. Vane

Is the Minister aware that many local authorities are restricted in the amount which they may issue in respect of licences for repairs and improvement of houses to the small figure of £1,500 a quarter for the whole of the local authority area, and that it is quite impossible for them to solve this problem until they are given wider powers?