HC Deb 02 March 1954 vol 524 cc1007-8
64 and 65. Mr. Edward Evans

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government (1) the allocation for local authority housing in Lowestoft for 1954;

(2) if he is aware of the substantial contract negotiated with the Russians for the building of trawlers in Lowestoft and that this will result in increased employment and the entry into the town of skilled workmen with their families; and if, in view of these considerations, he will ensure that the local authority is given authority to proceed with the building of sufficient houses to meet the ordinary needs of the people of Lowestoft and to cope with the increased demand.

Mr. Marples

At the beginning of this year the council had 102 houses in hand and they have been advised that they can add a further 100 to their programme during the year. As regards the Russian order for trawlers, plans are not sufficiently advanced to show what extra labour will be required and what effect it may have on the need for housing in Lowestoft.

Mr. Evans

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the Minister has cut the housing allocation by half, and that there are 1,200 people on the waiting list in Lowestoft? Is he further aware that the Minister proposes to go to Lowestoft next Monday to encourage the downhearted Tories there? Would he not be much better employed in looking after the housing interests of Lowestoft?

Mr. Marples

I do not think that the facts as stated by the hon. Gentleman are correct. The council completed 176 houses in 1951, 160 in 1952, and 166 in 1953. At the beginning of this year it had 102 houses in hand, and it has permission to start an extra 100. If it completes all those it has in hand, plus those which it has permission to start, this will be a record year for Lowestoft.