HC Deb 03 March 1970 vol 797 cc249-50
30. Mr. Alexander W. Lyon

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he will now make a statement on the Government's policy towards the studies in conservation of the four towns, particularly Lord Esher's report on York.

Mr. Greenwood

The conservation reports on York, Bath, Chichester and Chester have been studied by the Preservation Policy Group, under the chairmanship of my noble Friend Lord Kennet. The group is now preparing its report. I hope to make a statement shortly.

Mr. Lyon

Does my right hon. Friend agree that one of the most effective ways of celebrating Conservation Year would be to make a small amount available to each of these four cities as a trial experiment in the conservation of historic centres? Will he confer with his right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Local Government and Regional Planning and also with the Chancellor of the Exchequer to see that the announcement, when it is made, is highly favourable?

Mr. Greenwood

My hon. Friend will realise that I share his close personal interest in York. I do not think that these problems could be in better hands than those of the Preservation Policy Group. I have no doubt that my noble Friend, Lord Kennet, and his colleagues will have in mind the various financial considerations to which my hon. Friend draws attention.