§ Sir W. JOYNSON-HICKS
asked the First Commissioner of Works if he will say when the Government first took over Parliament Chambers, Great Smith Street, Westminster; whether he is aware that Messrs. Mather and Platt, Limited, engineers, of Lancashire, are desirous of purchasing the property in order to deal with an increasing export trade and to employ demobilised men therein; whether he is aware that their present office accommodation is inadequate; and whether, in view of the importance of obtaining the accom- 964W modation they need, he can give any limit as to the time in which Government officials will occupy these offices?
§ Sir A. MOND
As regards the first part of the question, Parliament Chambers were requisitioned on the 24th August, 1917. As regards the second and third parts of the question, I am aware that Messrs. Mather and Platt, Limited, are desirous of purchasing the premises as increased office accommodation. As regards the last part, I am making every effort to release the accommodation at the earliest possible date, and, while hoping to be able to do so within the next six months, it is as yet impossible to give a definite date, as it is dependent upon other equivalent accommodation in the same locality being available, the staff in question being a part of the headquarters of the Ministry of Pensions.