HC Deb 27 June 1979 vol 969 cc435-6
21. Mr. Allan Roberts

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what action he is willing to take to ensure implementation of the recommendations in the report produced in his Department on the Park Lane council estate in Bootle.

The Under-Secretary of State for the Environment (Mr. Geoffrey Finsberg)

The Department will shortly be publishing the results of research on certain estates with environmental and social problems, including the Park Lane estate. The implementation of any recommendations is for the local authority involved.

Mr. Roberts

Is not the Minister aware that the local authority has discussed this report and refused to take action, and that the problems—[HON. MEMBERS: "Reading."]—I am not reading—the problems on this estate are a direct consequence of the most reactionary policies being pursued by the Conservative council in that area, which is one of the worst housing authorities in the country? Does the hon. Gentleman know that families with children on this estate are trapped in flats and cannot get a transfer because the local authority is refusing to build any council houses, and refused to take up the money which the last Labour Government made available? Is the Minister aware also—

Mr. Speaker

Order. We might be better off if the hon. Gentleman were reading. I want to get in another question if I can.

Mr. Roberts

Finally, is the Minister aware that families with two children on this estate are being told that they need to have a third in order to be considered for a transfer and are in fact doing so? Will he take action to force the council to build the council houses that are necessary?

Mr. Finsberg

I doubt that a question of that sort will give any help to the tenants living on that problem-ridden estate. I shall be delighted to see whether I can help the local authority, but it must first evaluate the recommendations and then come to see us.