HC Deb 04 February 1976 vol 904 c1175
3. Mr. Rooker

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he expects to publish the detailed results of the recent water survey.

The Minister of State, Department of the Environment (Mr. Denis Howell)

Every effort is being made to have the report published before the Easter Recess.

Mr. Rooker

Having expressed grave concern before a Select Committee in December about the quality of tap water, why did my right hon. Friend slip into the back pages of Hansard two days before the Christmas Recess in reply to a planted Written Question details showing that 4 million houses in this country—according to the World Health Organisation's figures—receive unsafe tap water first thing in the morning?

Mr. Howell

I do not slip answers to Written Questions into the back pages of Hansard in any circumstances. The report was made available to my Department a few days previously and I took the immediate step of trying to ensure that the information was available. I am glad to say that my hon. Friend asked about 20 follow-up Questions, which I was glad to answer.