HC Deb 25 July 1967 vol 751 cc304-5
23. Mr. Brooks

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government what proportion of the total financial investment in the nation's housing stock was devoted to new construction and improvement, respectively, in the period 1962 to 1966; and what are the corresponding proportions planned during the period 1967 to 1971.

Mr. Mellish

In the period 1962 to 1966 some 65 per cent. of gross investment in housing was in new dwellings, 10 per cent. was on improvements and 25 per cent. was on repairs and maintenance. Expenditure on new housing will increase substantially between 1967 and 1971, as a result of the priority which the Government are giving to housing. How this will affect the division of gross investment will depend partly on the extent to which measures which we are developing for stimulating the rehabilitation of older houses may affect expenditure on improvements and repairs in this period.

Mr. Brooks

Will my hon. Friend bear in mind that many of us will welcome the recent stress upon the scope for rehabilitation of older properties, but that Merseyside Members will not be alone in hoping that the Government are not retreating in any way from their target of 500,000 new houses a year?

Mr. Mellish

Yes, Sir. The problem of the rehabilitation of older properties is urgent and my right hon. Friend is undertaking a review of the sort of legislation which we shall need to encourage local authorities to do a much bigger and better job than they have been doing.