HC Deb 10 December 1973 vol 866 cc33-4W
Mr. Rose

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) whether he will seek powers to order change of user where industrial storage and pollution continues to exist in residential areas;

(2) what representations he has received concerning the Crumpsall coal concentration in the constituency of the hon. Member for Manchester, Blackley; and whether he is satisfied with his existing powers to deal with such problems of industrial storage and pollution in residential areas.

Mr. Graham Page

The hon. Member wrote to my right hon and learned Friend earlier this year expressing his concern about the effects of the Crumpsall coal concentration and enclosing a petition signed by nearly 700 constituents. As the reply indicated, the matter is one for the Manchester City Council. As local planning authority it has adequate power under Section 51 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971 to require the discontinuance of any use of land, or to impose conditions on the continuance of any use, if it considers it expedient in the interests of the proper planning of its area. An order under the section has to be confirmed by the Secretary of State and, if confirmed, sets up a liability for compensation.

There are also powers under the Public Health Act 1936 and the Noise Abatement Act 1960 directed to securing the abatement of statutory nuisances, including dust and noise. These powers have been given to local authorities, not the Secretary of State, and it is for the city council to consider whether their use would be appropriate and effective.

The Protection of the Environment Bill recently given a Second Reading in another place seeks to improve local authorities' powers to deal with noise.