HC Deb 31 May 1962 vol 660 cc1557-8
1. Mr. Box

asked the Attorney-General whether he is aware of the hardships caused by the Settled Land Act, 1925, which restricts the granting of a new lease to not more than 50 years where such properties are held in trust; and if he will introduce amending legislation to remove this restriction.

The Solicitor-General (Sir John Hobson)

I am not aware of any hardships caused by the provisions of Section 41 of the Settled Land Act, 1925. If my hon. Friend has any evidence of such hardships, I will, of course, gladly consider it.

Mr. Box

Is my hon. and learned Friend not aware that in seeking additional leases of fifty years sitting tenants often have to surrender as much as eighteen years and, therefore, get a net increase of only some thirty-two years? I have such cases in my constituency. Is he further aware that some trustees apparently dislike the present restriction of the law and that I have heard of cases Where they are breaking it: Will he, as he has indicated, give further consideration to this matter in company with his right hon. Friend the Minister dof Housing when they are carrying out the current review of the leasehold system for the whole of the country?

The Solicitor-General

Yes, Sir. We will certainly consider the points my hon. Friend has raised.

Mr. Gower

Will my hon. and learned Friend take account of the fact that in South Wales, in particular, we are in some difficulty owing to the high incidence of the leasehold system as such which has led to the position that we have many leases which are not mort-gagable but which have about twenty, thirty or forty years unexpired? Any restriction of this kind bears particularly hard on us for these reasons.