HC Deb 22 November 1945 vol 416 cc730-1W
Miss Bacon

asked the Minister of Health if his recent Order gave local authories power to requisition cottages used for week-end and holiday purposes in those rural districts where there is a shortages of houses for the local population.

Mr. Shurmer

asked the Minister of Health if he will make sure that local authorities are making full use of requisitioning powers to take over week-end bungalows and cottages on the outskirts of all towns and cities.

Mr. Bevan

Clerks of local authorities already have power to requisition unoccupied houses whether furnished or unfurnished, and these powers can be exer- cised where premises are only occasionally occupied. I have no reason to think that local authorities are not fully aware of their powers or that they fail to exercise them in suitable cases.

Lieut.-Colonel Thorp

asked the Minister of Health whether he has empowered local authorities to requisition property in the hands of trustees or executors for the purpose of sale or letting in winding up estates of deceased persons.

Mr. Bevan

Clerks of local authorities are empowered to requisition any unoccupied houses, but the local authorities are required to consider on merits proposals for the occupation of the houses submitted by owner's within 14 days, and I have no doubt that they will consider proposals from trustees or executors of estates.

Mr. Peter Freeman

asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that the house, No. 46, Edward VII Avenue, Newport, Monmouthshire, was requisitioned in April on his instructions by the Town Clerk of Newport for a transferred war worker and that in October the owner of the house returned after six years' Army service; that the owner is in a key position in industry in Newport and requires his house for himself, his wife and two children; and will he arrange for the immediate return of the house to its owner, whose importance to the Newport industrial area is equal to that of the person now occupying the house.

Mr. Bevan

The Newport Town Council have been asked to take the necessary steps to secure the return of the premises to the owner as soon as possible.