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National Service Hostel, Onslow Square

Volume 463: debated on Tuesday 22 March 1949

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asked the Minister of Labour if he is aware that 800 single men at present accommodated by the National Service Hostels Corporation at Onslow Square, S.W.7, have been given notice to quit; that this notice expires on 9th April; and if he will give an assurance that these residents will be permitted to continue in occupation until they have been able to find or have been found suitable alternative accommodation.

About 700 men employed in less essential types of employment, in whose case the continued provision of subsidised accommodation in a Government hostel is not justified, have been given notice to leave the hostel. Local officers of my Department in London have been instruced to give all possible assistance to the men concerned to find other accommodation.

As our position in London is that we cannot find these men accommodation, either through the L.C.C. or through the Boroughs, is it not possible to continue their residence in that place, either subsidised or unsubsidised, through some machinery open to the Minister?

We must take this action. These hostels were operated by the Government and subsidised heavily to provide accommodation for men and women transferred to priority work. We have given every help we can to the persons concerned, but we must end the condition now operating.