HC Deb 26 November 1957 vol 578 cc964-5
26. Mr. Sydney Irving

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government how many authorities on the fringe of the Greater London area he consulted as to their views on being included in the terms of reference of the Royal Commission on London; how many of these expressed disapproval; and how many of those consulted were finally so included.

Mr. H. Brooke

The terms of reference of the Royal Commission are a matter for my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister. He has, however, asked me to say that the 111 local authorities consulted included 33 on the fringe of the area. Of these, eight thought that their areas should not be included. All were included eventually, but on the other hand the draft terms of reference were re-worded so as to make clear that the area defined was purely for purposes of review.

Mr. Irving

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that at least some authorities felt that the Minister had already made up his mind and that this was a futile exercise and a waste of time? Will the right hon. Gentleman make clear to those authorities what their rights are with reference to the Local Government Boundary Commission, where they would normally and naturally belong in the review that is taking place?

Mr. Brooke

The question of the terms of reference of the Commission was a matter for my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister, but I know that very careful attention was giver, to all the replies that were sent in. As I said, the suggested terms of reference were, in fact, revised so as to make it quite clear that even within the review area it was not essential for the Royal Commission to recommend any changes.

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