HC Deb 18 October 1966 vol 734 cc23-8
28. Mr. Frank Allaun

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government if he will state the total of applications made to rent officers for determination of a fair rent, and also the number made to each rent office; if he is aware of the small fraction of decontrolled tenants paying exorbitant rents who have applied; and if he will take steps to publicise the opportunities now existing and the safeguards against reprisals by landlords.

The Minister of Housing and Local Government (Mr. Anthony Greenwood)

21,920 applications for determination of a fair rent were made to rent officers up to 8th October. I will, with permission, circulate in the OFFICIAL REPORT the detailed figures asked for. It is most important that all concerned should be aware of their rights under the Rent Act and I am now planning further publicity.

Mr. Allaun

Would my right hon. Friend agree that fewer than three out of 100 decontrolled tenants have so far applied for rent reductions, although a far higher number could secure them if they did? Would he therefore use Press, radio and particularly TV publicity, because when he did this recently over rate rebate applications, the number went up considerably?

Mr. Greenwood

I welcome my hon. Friend's interest and I hope that he will study the figures. There has been intense publicity, although I think that there is scope for further publicity. Any help which hon. Members can give in bringing the provisions of the Act to the attention of their constituents will be greatly appreciated.

Mr. Blenkinsop

Is my right hon. Friend aware that many tenants making applications are withdrawing them because they do not fully understand the protection available under the Act?

Mr. Greenwood

Yes, indeed. There is no reason why anybody should be afraid of applying for protection under the Act, because it provides very stiff penalties for both harassment and illegal eviction. I hope that nobody will be afraid of taking advantage of his rights under the Act.

Mr. Doughty

Do not the figures show that the rents charged, on the whole, are perfectly fair and that the provisions of the Act, in part, are unnecessary?

Mr. Greenwood

I do not think so. The first priority must be the determination of fair rents for regulated tenancies. We have still a long way to go before we can draw the conclusion which the hon. and learned Gentleman has drawn.

Following are the detailed figures:

Applications for determination of a fair rent made in each registration area (counties, county boroughs and London boroughs) up to 8th October, 1966.

London Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 3rd January 1966).
City or London 3
Westminster 1,020
Camden 942
Islington 619
Hackney 1,148
Tower Hamlets 499
Greenwich 359
Lewisham 491
Southwark 527
Lambeth 597
Wandsworth 453
Hammersmith 461
Kensington/Chelsea 619
Waltham Forest 484
Redbridge 232
Havering 73
Barking 85
Newham 357
Bexley 119
Bromley 295
Croydon 273
Sutton 143
Merton 164
Kingston/Thames 114
Richmond/Thames 212
Hounslow 148
Hillingdon 219
Ealing 506
Brent 406
Harrow 171
Barnet 601
Haringey 598
Enfield 237
Total: 13,175

West Midland Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 14th February, 1966).

Herefordshire 9
Salop 21
Staffordshire 114
Warwickshire 87
Worcestershire 47
Birmingham 400
Burton on Trent 14
Coventry 58
Dudley 4
Warley 22
Solihull 10
Stoke on Trent 40
Walsall 103
West Bromwich 28
Wolverhampton 35
Worcester 10
Total: 1,002

Northern Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 1st March, 1966).

Cumberland 38
Durham 70
Northumberland 99
Westmorland 10
Carlisle 12

Darlington 22
Gateshead 46
Newcastle on Tyne 156
South Shields 164
Sunderland 69
Tynemouth 26
West Hartlepool 14
Total: 726

Yorkshire Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened 1st March, 1966).

East Riding 13
North Riding 18
West Riding 98
Barnsley 8
Bradford 111
Dewsbury 6
Doncaster 22
Halifax 30
Huddersfield 10
Kingston upon Hull 213
Leeds 47
Middlesbrough 29
Rotherham 20
Sheffield 162
Wakefield 3
York 56
Total: 846

Bristol Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened 1st March, 1966).

Gloucester 63
Somerset 99
Wiltshire 101
Bath 14
Bristol 182
Gloucester 10
Total: 469

East Midland Rent Assesment Panel Area (opened on 16th March, 1966).

Derbyshire 95
Holland 10
Kesteven 13
Leicestershire 51
Lindsey 37
Northamptonshire 24
Nottinghamshire 144
Rutland 2
Derby 39
Grimsby 29
Leicester C.B 247
Lincoln 26
Northampton 22
Nottingham 88
Total: 827

Surrey and Sussex Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 28th March, 1966).

Surrey 254
East Sussex 308
West Sussex 185
Brighton 85
Eastbourne 74
Hastings 71
Total: 977

Liverpool Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 4th April, 1966).

Cheshire (part) 41
Lancashire (part) 46
Chester 1
Birkenhead 43
Bootle 5
Liverpool 371
St. Helens 34
Southport 17
Wallasey 102
Warrington 40
Total: 700

Manchester Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 4th April, 1966.)

Cheshire (part) 73
Lancashire (part) 196
Barrow 8
Blackburn 7
Blackpool 25
Bolton 8
Burnley 6
Bury 9
Manchester 269
Oldham 19
Preston 29
Rochdale 5
Salford 67
Stockport 21
Wigan 28
Total: 770

Devon and Cornwall Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 18th April. 1966)

Cornwall 24
Devon 150
Exeter 45
Plymouth 141
Isles of Scilly 0
Total 360

Kent Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 18th April, 1966)

Kent 364
Canterbury 30
Total 394

Southern Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 18th April, 1966)

Dorset 88
Hampshire 192
Isle of Wight 30
Bournemouth 148
Portsmouth 74
Southampton 81
Total 613

Thames Valley Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 16th May. 1966)

Berkshire 47
Buckinghamshire (part) 83
Oxfordshire 10
Oxford 16
Reading 18
Total 174

Eastern Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 20th June, 1966)

Essex 119
Norfolk 44
East Suffolk 16
West Suffolk 6
Great Yarmouth 15
Ipswich 31
Norwich 43
Southend on Sea 419
Total 693

Luton Rent Assessment Panel Area (opened on 20th June, 1966)

Bedfordshire 23
Buckinghamshire (part) 8
Cambridgeshire and Isle of Ely 31
Hertfordshire 69
Huntingdonshire and Peter- borough 9
Luton 54
Total 194