HC Deb 01 March 1971 vol 812 cc1203-4
12. Mr. John

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what initiatives he proposes to restore derelict land in national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty in Wales.

Mr. Gibson-Watt

Officials of the Derelict Land Unit have visited all councils in national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty with significant dereliction problems. Two schemes have been carried out and a number of others are being considered.

Mr. John

As there are currently 2,200 acres in this category of land, and if Wales is to develop as a tourist attraction, is it not important that dereliction should be removed at the earliest possible moment, and removed by initiatives stemming from the Welsh Office?

Mr. Gibson-Watt

Everyone will agree with what the hon. Member says with regard to dereliction in general. The hon. Gentleman will be glad to know that the Welsh Office is taking a leading part in tackling this problem. Members of the Derelict Land Unit will be happy to visit or revisit any authority which requires advice or which needs assistance in the preparation of schemes.

13. Mr. George Thomas

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what consultations he has now had with Welsh local authorities concerning his proposals for the financing of schemes for the clearance of derelict land; and what alterations he now proposes to make to his original plans.

Mr. Peter Thomas

As I promised in the Welsh Grand Committee Debate on 20th January, the Welsh Office has had discussions with local authorities directed to seeing that in country areas a proper provision from county allocations is made for derelict land clearance, and if, in some exceptional case, some supplementation is necessary, this will not be ruled out. I do not otherwise propose any alterations to my original plans.

Mr. George Thomas

The right hon. and learned Gentleman will be aware that all Wales takes a special pride in the work of the Derelict Land Unit and there will be some disappointment that he is not altering the general formula. Would he be good enough to put in the Library, or in HANSARD in the form of a Written Answer, details of the alterations that he proposes in the financing of schemes?

Mr. Peter Thomas

I should be only too pleased to do that in response to a Question. I do not think that I can add anything to what I said in the debate in the Welsh Grand Committee on 20th January.