HC Deb 04 March 1981 vol 1000 cc271-2
13. Mr. Brinton

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many local authorities have shown interest in the new film on low-cost home ownership made by his Department.

Mr. Stanley

The Department's film on low-cost home ownership is attracting widespread interest, not only from local authorities, but from new towns, housing associations, private housebuilders, professional bodies and lending institutions. Arrangements are being made to show it to all housing authorities in England, approximately two-thirds of which have already arranged to see it.

Mr. Brinton

I thank my hon. Friend for that answer. Is he aware that the Opposition were so keen on the prospect of low-cost house buildings that they refused to allow the inclusion of a date for a showing of the film in The Whip? Will my hon. Friend encourage the remaining one-third of local authorities to make use of the film and thus stretch slender resources further under this admirable plan?

Mr. Stanley

I assure my hon. Friend that outside the House there is some interest among Labour Party supporters in seeing the low-cost home ownership film. I am ready to acknowledge that a number of Labour-controlled authorities are engaging in homesteading, shared ownership and improvement for sale projects. I hope that we can reach a measure of agreement across the Floor of the House on the desirability of using this means of extending home ownership.

Mr. Alton

Does the Minister accept that instead of merely producing a film on low-cost home ownership it would be better, and much more in the interests of those buying their own homes, if he were to bring down the mortgage rate to the level that obtained when he became responsible for housing matters?

Mr. Stanley

I am glad to be able to tell the hon. Gentleman that despite the level of the mortgage rate we have had a significant extension of home ownership during the lifetime of the Government. We have on the statute book the most far-reaching means of extending home ownership that there has ever been.

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