HC Deb 18 July 1963 vol 681 cc703-4
24. Mr. Wingfield Digby

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs in how many cases in the last year local authorities, and therefore ratepayers, have paid the legal expenses of both sides in public inquiries; and in how many of these cases opposing local authorities have been within the same county.

Mr. Corfield

I regret that detailed figures could not be extracted without examining several thousand separate files. But I can state that in each case the numbers are very small.

Mr. Digby

Is my hon. Friend aware that cases are arising where the wishes of the ratepayers are fairly clear; and that whereas as a member of the legal profession I can see some advantage in the practice, as a ratepayer I strongly deprecate it?

Mr. Corfield

With due respect, I think that my hon. Friend's Question is remarkably unspecific. The term "public inquiries" covers a very large number of subjects, many of which are wholly outside the control of my right hon. Friend. If my hon. Friend will let me know which particular types of inquiry he has in mind, I will try to find an answer to his problem.

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