HC Deb 01 April 1958 vol 585 cc1003-5
11. Dr. King

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs what action he proposes to take to deal with landlords who are evicting long-established tenants or who are charging exorbitant rents, in view of Her Majesty's Government's new policy in this regard.

Mr. H. Brooke

I would refer the hon. Member to my statement in the debate on 3rd March.

Dr. King

Is the Minister aware that the warning he gave to wicked landlords and his indication that he might do something about it raised hopes in the hearts of thousands of families who are grievously anxious at the moment? Would not it have been much kinder not to make a speech of that kind if he does not propose to do anything about it, rather than raise the hopes of people suffering the threat of eviction next October?

Mr. Brooke

I do not agree. I am quite sure that the effect of my statement was salutary.

Mr. Mitchison

Has the right hon. Gentleman's somewhat prolonged contemplation of the landlords of England led him to formulate any proposals for dealing with this kind of case, and if so, will he tell us what they are?

Mr. Brooke

I said on 3rd March that, having given certain advice, the natural thing was to wait and see whether the advice was taken.

Mr. S. Silverman

Does the Minister consider that my hon. Friend the Member for Leicester, North-West (Mr. Janner) was right a few minutes ago when he said that in the case of a decontrolled house, a landlord, after giving a proper notice to quit, could himself enter the house and dispossess the occupier without an order of any court; and, if that is so, would not it be a suitable measure for alleviating anxiety if he were to introduce—at any rate to this extent—amending legislation, to make it necessary for landlords to obtain an order from a court before they can forcibly dispossess anybody?

Mr. Brooke

The hon. Member is asking a supplementary question to a Question which has been long since passed.

Mr. S. Silverman

On a point of order. In view of the Minister's refusal to answer a perfectly relevant supplementary question, I should like to give notice that at an early date I shall take an opportunity to raise this matter on the Motion for the Adjournment.