HC Deb 02 June 1960 vol 624 cc1621-2
26. Commander Kerans

asked the President of the Board of Trade how many acres of land are immediately available in West Hartlepool and Hartlepool, respectively, for industrial development.

Mr. J. Rodgers

Thirty-eight acres of land are available for immediate industrial development on the Board of Trade's Hartlepools Estate, 24 in West Hartlepool and 14 in Hartlepool, My right hon. Friend understands that, in addition, there are several privately or municipally owned industrial sites, totalling 28 acres in West Hartlepool and 7½ acres in Hartlepool, but that not all of these are available for immediate development.

Commander Kerans

Will my hon. Friend explain why his regional controller, in a tour from Jarrow to The Hartlepools, said that he could find only 20 acres immediately available for industrial development and in The Hartlepools only 8 acres suitable for building?

Mr. Rodgers

The regional controller said that he was looking for one site of 20 acres which was immediately available and that no such site existed in the area. That, I understand, is the position. The largest site on the Board's Hartlepools estate is 8 acres. One of the other sites mentioned is about 13 acres.

Mr. Chetwynd

While it may be true that no site of that size exists in the development district, is it not also true that people living on the perimeter could easily travel from the development district into this area where I am sure sites are available?

Mr. Rodgers

To the south of West Hartlepool there is a site of 106 acres. Industrialists have looked at this and have not found it attractive.

Mr. Harold Davies

Do the Government intend in the near future doing something about this problem of industrialists looking for land? The extortionate prices asked are a social scab on the system. Is the hon. Gentleman prepared to do something to control the prices of land?

Mr. Rodgers

That is another question. Our regional controller is, however, in touch with the local planning authority about the possibility of more land being made available for industry in the boroughs of West Hartlepool and Hartlepool.