§ Ms Atherton
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what research his Department has(a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the incidence of Mundic in housing. 
§ Ms Beverley Hughes
My Department has an on-going programme of research into the better understanding of the deterioration mechanism which affects housing constructed using mundic aggregate. The work is developing methods of testing and assessment to enable the maximum number of houses to be safely accepted by mortgage lenders for obtaining mortgages. Initial recommendations were made in 1994 and 1997 from which the Council of Mortgage Lenders agreed to mortgage about 80 per cent. of houses that had previously been blighted. Further recommendations covering a proportion of the remaining houses will be made in the next few months.