Mr. T. THOMSON
asked the Minister of Health, in view of the fact that after admitting the great need for working men's houses in Billingham, County Durham, he has reduced the number proposed by the local council from 80 to 30 on the grounds of shortness in the supply of building labour; and, seeing that this shortness is on account of the Government taking up the labour and materials for their new military camp at Catterick, will he reconsider his decision?
§ Mr. WHEATLEY
I have authorised the Urban District Council of Billingham to proceed with the erection of 30 houses as an immediate instalment of their proposals for the erection of 80 houses. Having regard to the available supply of skilled labour in the building trade and the needs of other areas, I do not feel justified in authorising a larger immediate programme in the present case, but I shall be prepared to consider favourably an application from the local authority for permission to proceed with a further instalment of their programme when progress has been made with the number already authorised.