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Possession (Claims)

Volume 414: debated on Thursday 25 October 1945

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asked the Minister of Health what priority is to be given to ex-Service and Service personnel in their applications for houses and their claims for reoccupation of their own houses.

The arrangements under which Service and ex-Servicemen can obtain consideration for housing accommodation are explained in Circular 109–45, of which I will send the hon. Member a copy. On the question of re-occupation I would refer to the reply I gave on 9th October to my hon. Friend the Member for the Drake Division of Plymouth (Mr. Medland) in regard to the release of requisitioned houses owned by Servicemen. Houses coming within the scope of the Rent Restrictions Acts that have been let by Service personnel are dealt with in the Report of the Ridley Committee on Rent Control, which is under consideration.

asked the Minister of Health what is the position of those members of the Forces who let their own houses and now seek possession of them.

Where a person was owner of a house before the war and now requires possession for himself, the court has power to grant possession, without needing to be satisfied that there is alternative accommodation for the tenant, if it is satisfied that it is reasonable to do so after considering the degree of hardship on both sides.

asked the Minister of Health whether, in view of the unnecessary expense and hardship caused both to the house-owner desiring to enter into possession of his property and to the tenant desiring to obtain possession, he will introduce legislation to provide for the establishment of local tribunals to deal with local applications for possession with the minimum cost to the persons involved.

I think that it would be a mistake to supersede the ordinary courts by special tribunals to deal with applications for possession.