§ Mr. Nigel Griffiths
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will consider assisting local authorities to prepare programmes for the installation of fire detectors and alarms in houses and to give grants to tenants and home owners for the installation of fire detectors and alarms; and if he will make a statement.
§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
[holding answer 13 June 1988]: Local authorities will wish to give serious consideration to the benefits to be obtained from the installation of fire detectors and alarms in houses. As far as their own housing stock is concerned, it is for authorities themselves to programme expenditure on such work within the resources which have been made available and in the light of their other priorities. Councils may include such programmes of work in their housing capital programmes and we shall take note of any such proposals in considering future levels of capital allocations.
As far as the private sector is concerned, our consultation paper, "Private Housing Renewal: The Government's Proposals for Scotland", issued on 19 May, proposed a discretionary grant by local authorities which would cover such devices in houses in multiple occupation only. However, the Government would be prepared, dependent on the responses on this point, to consider extending this to all houses in the private sector.