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Bombed Property, London

Volume 462: debated on Thursday 3 March 1949

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14.

asked the Minister of Health how many applications he has received from the local authorities of London for permits to restore the bombed sites of London; and how many he has refused.

If the hon. and gallant Member will indicate what type of rebuilding he has in mind I will see what information is available.

Does not the right hon. Gentleman know of the vast blitzed areas in London, which constitute ugly and dreary gaps in our main thoroughfares? It is those to which I am referring.

All I can say is that the Question has a most delightful ambiguity. It was not possible for me to see to what, in fact, the hon. and gallant Member was referring. In so far as the rebuilding of cost of works houses is concerned, only about 300 cost of works houses above £5,000 now remain to be rebuilt. I am considering what facilities to give for their rebuilding.

Has the right hon. Gentleman read my Question, in which I have asked about applications "for permits to restore the bombed sites of London "—in other words, to put buildings on the bombed sites—and so give some greeting to our visitors in the Festival of Britain?

With all respect, a person does not restore a bombed site. The only thing which can be referred to, as far as I am concerned, is the rebuilding of cost of works houses.

:Yes. The hon. and gallant Member must address his Questions about other matters to other Ministers. I am concerned primarily with those houses. I have replied that there are only 300 cost of works houses to be rebuilt above the £5,000 limit and that I am now considering what steps can be taken to get them rebuilt.

15.

asked the Minister of Health how many applications he has had from private individuals to rebuild or restore bombed homes in London; and how many he has refused.

For the statistics of rebuilt houses, I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the Housing Return. No figures are available as to the applications refused.

Would it not greatly facilitate the accommodation of the homeless people of this great city of ours if more speedy steps were taken to fill up the gaps in the streets through which we pass every day?

I have already answered the hon. and gallant Member on his previous Question. 25,316 houses have been rebuilt in England and Wales under licence.

The first priority was given to "rebuilds" costing less than £3,000. The figure is now £5,000. The only remaining category are 300 above the £5,000 limit.