HC Deb 10 November 1953 vol 520 cc34-5W
106. Mr. Viant

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he is aware that there are no powers within the framework of existing legislation which will enable borough councils to control the future use of factory premises vacated by industrial undertakings transferred to the new and expanded towns; that this makes it practically impossible for any reduction in the over-industrialisation of such boroughs; and if he will give an assurance that this problem is receiving his consideration.

Mr. Marples

Local planning authorities have power, under Section 26 of the Town and Country Planning Act, 1947, to insist on any use being discontinued, if there are good planning reasons for doing so, subject to payment of compensation. In addition local authorities can buy vacated industrial premises and clear them in the process of redevelopment. The difficulty is cost. Industrial premises are apt to be very expensive. I fear, therefore, that, while many vacated factories in fact cease to be used as such, the process of extinguishing their use must be slow.