HC Deb 29 April 1958 vol 587 cc173-4
20. Mr. Hamilton

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is aware that several local authorities have had to undertake costly repairs to their Crudentype houses owing to the deterioration of certain materials in the roofs; how many such authorities have requested financial assistance in the carrying out of these repairs; and whether, in view of declared governmental policy on the desirability of maintaining all houses in a good state of repair, he will reconsider his decision not to grant such assistance.

Mr. Maclay

A number of authorities have had to carry out repairs to the roofs of Cruden houses, and seventeen have asked for financial assistance. Local authorities are, however, responsible for repairs to their houses of whatever type, and I am not prepared to make any exception in this case.

Mr. Hamilton

Does not the right hon. Gentleman agree that this rapid deterioration of the roof materials was quite unforeseen? In the circumstances, and in view of governmental policy to keep houses in repair, could he not be more forthcoming in order to help local authorities do that?

Mr. Maclay

In general, it is really the duty of the owners, public or private, to keep houses in good repair, and the Government cannot accept financial responsibility for this work.