HC Deb 04 May 1936 vol 311 cc1358-60W
Captain PLUGGE

asked the Minister of Health which of the local authorities in this country have erected or maintain hotels; and what is the policy of his Department with regard to this matter?

Sir K. WOOD,

pursuant to his reply [OFFICIAL REPORT, 30th April, 1936; col. 1081, Vol. 311] to a Supplementary Question by Mr. A. V. ALEXANDER, circulated the following information

There are no specific powers in the general law enabling local authorities to erect or to maintain hotels. Local Act powers were sought in the Bridlington Corporation Bill of 1904. The proposal was withdrawn by the promoters. On that Bill the Local Government Board reported to Parliament: The provision, maintenance, furnishing and equipment of a hotel… are quite outside the ordinary functions of a local authority and the board submit that such powers should not be conferred on a Corporation. There have since been a few cases where a local authority has acquired or erected a hotel in special circumstances. The following are cases of this kind of which the Minister of Health has a record:

  1. (i)In pursuance of Local Act powers possessed by them in connection with mineral waters and springs, the Harrogate Corporation were authorised by the Harrogate Order, 1913, to acquire an estate comprising a hotel, sulphur baths and mineral springs.
  2. (ii)The Manchester Corporation converted some buildings at their aerodrome at Barton into a hotel under 1360 the special powers of the Air Navigation Act, 1920, relating to the establishment of municipal aerodromes.
  3. (iii) Walsall Corporation bought and demolished a hotel in connection with a road widening scheme, and under Local Act powers enabling them to deal with surplus land, they erected a new hotel on the new building line.
In each of these cases the hotel is understood to have been let on lease by the local authority and is not operated by them.