HC Deb 01 May 1956 vol 552 c189
12 and 13. Mr. H. Butler

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government (1) whether he is aware that the caravan-resident population is growing at the rate of at least 3,000 per year; and what his policy is for dealing with the consequent demand for land;

(2) whether he is aware of the need for more sites for residential caravans; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Powell

I have no statistics of the number of caravans in use as permanent residences. For the rest, I would refer the hon. Member to the reply which I gave to the hon. Member for Rugby (Mr. J. Johnson) on 27th March.

Mr. Butler

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that last year 20,000 caravans were produced and that it is probable that production will be at the same rate this year? If the population is deciding to seek this form of residence, surely his Department has some responsibility for providing the land on which the caravans may rest? As the Minister's legislation is presenting local authorities from building houses to let, will he at least find some place upon which a caravan can rest and a tent can be pitched?

Mr. Powell

The number of caravans going into use as permanent residences is purely a matter of conjecture. There are no statistics on the subject. With regard to sites, it is in the first instance for the local planning authority to decide what land shall and what land shall not be used for this purpose.