HC Deb 03 August 1971 vol 822 cc1316-7
9. Mr. Leslie Huckfield

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he is satisfied with the procedures attending the sale of Keresley Hospital; and whether he will make a statement.

Mr. Alison

Yes, Sir; and I have written again today to the hon. Member for Nuneaton (Mr. Leslie Huckfield).

Mr. Huckfield

Will the hon. Gentleman accept that I am most grateful that he feels he has to write to me yet again? Will he accept that this hospital ought to have been put on sale with at least outline planning permission for possible hotel development, particularly when local planning officers had already indicated this would be the case? Would he accept that the hotelier in question got a very cheap bargain and that the hon. Gentleman's Department, through its own negligence, got a very bad one?

Mr. Alison

I shall always write to the hon. Gentleman when he writes to me. So far as the bad bargain is concerned, a reserve price was set by the district valuer at the auction, and that price took into account the possibility of the development of the building as a hotel.