HC Deb 17 February 1977 vol 926 c320W
Mr. Pendry

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what assistance has been given by Government agencies to assist the local authorities in the improvement of the Tame Valley, Greater Manchester.

Mr. Guy Barnett

Almost all of the improvement works so far carried out in the Tame Valley have been supported by Government assistance. Since 1969 local authorities involved in the Tame Valley Improvement Scheme have spent approximately £600,000, of which £450,000 has been provided by the Exchequer by way of 75 per cent. grants under Section 8 of the Local Employment Act 1972. In addition, during the last two years the Countryside Commission has provided about £70,000 in grants for tree planting schemes under Section 9 of the Local Government Act 1974.

There are under consideration in the Department a number of further improvement schemes, costing approximately £250,000, many of which are likely to qualify for the current rate of derelict land grant—100 per cent. The Countryside Commission, too, is considering further tree planting and informal recreational schemes costing about £150,000 which are likely to receive grant at the rate of 50 per cent.

The Countryside Commission is also carrying out an experiment, which started in July 1976, to encourage the enjoyment of the footpaths, woodlands and open fields of the valley, and will provide about £15,000 a year in the next three years to enable the Civic Trust for the North-West, as agent for the Commission, to encourage local interest in the Tame Valley and to improve facilities.