HC Deb 06 May 1969 vol 783 c247
2. Mr. Hastings

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he will make a statement on future planning policy in the South-East.

Mr. K. Robinson

This must await completion of the comprehensive planning study of the South-East now being undertaken by a joint central and local government team led by the Ministry's chief planner.

Mr. Hastings

Is it not discouraging to those who worked so hard to produce the South-East Study to find that there is to be this further delay? Will it now be possible to have a co-ordinated study of the South-East before a decision is made about the siting of a third London Airport either at Foulness or at an inland site?

Mr. Robinson

The answer to the first part of the hon. Gentleman's supplementary question is that it was generally agreed that this further study was necessary. I hope that it will be completed by the spring of next year.

The answer to the second part is that all considerations concerning a third London airport will be taken into account by those conducting the study. I do not believe that this problem in any way invalidates their work.

Mr. Gwilym Roberts

Does my right hon. Friend appreciate the urgency of this matter in view of the complex housing, industrial, airport and other problems which are becoming ever more pressing in this part of the country?

Mr. Robinson

Yes, Sir. We recognise the urgency of the matter, but it is most important to get the right answers. For this reason a team has been appointed; and it is getting on with the job as fast as possible.