§ 47. Mr. Ioan Evans
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what action he has taken to encourage cooperative housing; and whether he has any further proposals in this regard.
§ Mr. Freeson
The Housing Rents and Subsidies Act 1975 provided for subsidy to continue where local authorities make an approved agreement under which responsibility for running an estate is handed over to a tenants' co-operative, and also for grant to be available to co-operatives in the housing association sector. The Report of the Working Party on Housing Co-operatives, chaired by Mr. Harold Campbell, which I set up in August 1974, was published in January 1976, together with a departmental circular providing guidance to local authorities and housing associations on the setting up of co-operatives which do not564W involve individual equity-sharing, and also announcing the formation within the Housing Corporation of an agency responsible for the sponsorship and encouragement of co-operatives. The Working Party's recommendations on the provision of subsidy for co-ownership must await the outcome of the Housing Finance Review, and the Report of the Working Group on New Forms of Social Ownership and Tenure. In the meantime, the Department is providing advice and guidance to local authorities and housing associations on co-operative housing matters.