§ 9. Mr. Sorensen
asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs what modifications he has now decided to make in respect of his original proposals for the reorganisation of Greater London local government; and when it is anticipated that final proposals will be reached concerning the amalgamation of the borough of Leyton with other boroughs.
No modifications have been made, other than the revised arrangements for education in the centre referred to in the answer which I gave to a Question by my hon. Friend the Member for Ealing, North (Mr. Barter) on 3rd May. I hope to announce the final proposals for grouping boroughs during the summer.
§ Mr. Sorensen
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether it is true that certain areas in Surrey have been omitted from the original plan? In view of that, does he propose to make similar omissions of certain areas or constituencies in Essex?
As I promised the House in the debate on the White Paper—indeed, it was promised in the White Paper—there have been consultations about the peripheral boundary. I named a number of areas which, without further argument, could properly be omitted. In the 613 last week, I have seen all the local authorities concerned with proposals for omission not yet accepted. Those consultations are now completed, and I hope in a week or so to announce the intentions of the Government in relation to the periphery as a whole.
§ Mr. A. Lewis
Before the Minister issues what he says are the final views or proposals of the Government, may I ask whether he would consider having a debate, not on the final proposals but on suggestions, so that the House may come to a decision on the proposals and we are not presented with a fait accompli as was the case on the previous occasion?
As promised, I listened to every local authority which wished to see me. I am considering their views. In due course the conclusions of the Government will be embodied in a Bill to be placed before the House and then, no doubt, the fullest discussion will take place.
§ Mr. Sorensen
Will the right hon. Gentleman please reply to my specific question, whether areas which were omitted are in Essex?
I beg the pardon of the hon. Gentleman. I listened to views from Essex as well as those of all the other peripheral counties. I have met representatives and certain local authorities from Essex.
§ Mr. M. Stewart
So that in the end the House may have an opportunity to pronounce as suggested by my hon. Friend the Member for West Ham, North (Mr. A. Lewis), will the Minister undertake that the proposed boundary will be in any Bill which is produced and not be left to be settled by Ministerial order under the Bill?