HC Deb 07 December 1943 vol 395 cc786-7W
Mr. Hewlett

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that serving men have to wander about Manchester vainly seeking shelter for the night because of the shortage of accommodation; and whether he will assist local effort to meet the urgent needs of these men?

Sir J. Grigg

I have only recently heard the suggestion that there is a shortage of accommodation in Manchester for members of the Services. The military authorities have been asked to report on the matter and to suggest any necessary remedies.

Mr. Rostron Duckworth

asked the Secretary of State for War whether, in view of the coming winter, he will institute a national inquiry into the adequacy or inadequacy of accommodation in all towns and cities frequented by travelling Service men so as to allay the widespread uneasiness which exists on the subject?

Sir J. Grigg

I am regularly informed of the need for such accommodation and a special inquiry is not, I think, necessary. About 29,000 beds are now available for personnel of the Services who are travelling and a further 600 are being provided. My hon. Friend will appreciate that it is becoming increasingly difficult to find suitable accommodation for additional hostels where the need for them arises and the shortage of labour and materials, which are needed for many essential projects for the prosecution of the war, may often delay their equipment.