HC Deb 15 July 1958 vol 591 cc994-5
29. Sir A. V. Harvey

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs why Mr. Richard Barber, 37, Heath Road, Congleton, has not received compensation for his house at 12, King Street, Buglawton, Congleton, which was demolished under a compulsory order, details of which have been forwarded to him.

Mr. H. Brooke

Questions of compensation are governed by Statute. In this instance I am afraid that the owner does not qualify for compensation under the Slum Clearance (Compensation) Act, 1956.

The question whether a payment should be made under Section 60 of the Housing Act, 1957, which applies to well maintained houses, was carefully considered. But after inspection of the property by my Inspector, and in accordance with his report on its general condition, the conclusion reached was that the award of a well maintained payment would not be warranted, despite the fact that work had been done to make the interior comfortable.

Sir A. V. Harvey

Does not my right hon. Friend think that this is most unfair? This man has very limited means and has done up the house with his own labour and has had to demolish it himself? Does not my right hon. Friend think that all this is most unjust, and will he reconsider the matter if I send him further details?

Mr. Brooke

The House must appreciate that this is a most unfortunate case of a man who in 1952 bought a house which had been condemned in 1939. Had he made inquiries, he would have ascertained that it had been condemned. The structural condition of the house was such that in my view it would have been quite impossible to treat it as well maintained. I am very sorry.

Sir A. V. Harvey

On a point of order. In view of the unsatisfactory nature of the reply, I beg to give notice that I shall raise the matter on the Adjournment.