Mr. W. M. ADAMSON
asked the Minister of Health whether he has approved of a loan to the Cannock Urban District Council amounting to £7,600 for 38 houses to be built in St. John's Road, Cannock; whether he is aware that an agreement has been entered into giving a colliery company the right to control these dwellings as tied houses for 20 years; and whether, in view of strong public opposition to this arrangement, he 1783W will institute a public inquiry into the circumstances of the loan under such an agreement?
§ Mr. WHEATLEY
The Cannock Urban District Council have undertaken in the exercise of their powers to make a loan of the amount stated in respect of 38 houses to be erected by a private builder in the district, and the raising of the necessary loan has been sanctioned under the Housing Act, 1923. The arrangement between the builder and a colliery company, by which the company will control the letting of the houses, is not one to which I can take exception under the scheme of the 1923 Act.
asked the Minister of Health whether he has received a request from the Cannock Rural District Council for a loan to be granted in respect of dwelling houses to be built at Hilton, Featherstone and Huntington; whether he is aware that, dependent upon such a grant, an agreement has been entered into between the council and two colliery companies for the latter to control them as tied houses for 15 years and whether he is prepared to withhold grants where such an agreement. applies?
§ Mr. WHEATLEY
The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. As regards the second part, I understand that agreements have been made between the rural district council and two colliery companies under which the rents of the houses to be erected are guaranteed to the council by the companies. I am informed that a clause in the agreement which gave the companies a right of control in the selection of tenants has now been cancelled.