HC Deb 08 December 2003 vol 415 cc345-6W
Mr. Hammond

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what assessment his Department has made of the impact of the withdrawal of local authority social housing grant on the rate of completion of affordable homes by Runnymede borough council. [141907]

Keith Hill

Local Authority Social Housing Grant (LASHG) has been abolished to allow the resources to be better targeted, in particular, to achieve the objectives set out in "Sustainable Communities: Building for the Future". Transitional arrangements over the 2003–04 to 2005–06 period are expected to provide around 14,000 homes but no estimates have been made on the impact this will have on the number of social housing dwellings provided, either in total or in particular locations. That will depend on a number of factors, including on what and where the available resources should be spent following the recommendations from the new Regional Housing Boards.

Sir George Young

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many excess winter deaths he estimates could be avoided by bringing homes of vulnerable households up to minimum legislative standards; and what his estimate is of the cost of such work. [142005]

Keith Hill

In 2000–01 it was estimated that there were around 25,000 excess winter deaths. It is not possible to say how many of those were as a direct result of housing condition.

The relationship between indoor temperatures and ill health is complex and the causes of excess winter deaths are not clear but cold weather and illnesses such as flu play an important part alongside other factors such as outside exposure and behavioural patterns.