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Refuse Tipping, Ditton Common

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 12 July 1949

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asked the Minister of Town and Country Planning whether his attention has been drawn to the proposal of Esher Urban District Council for controlled tipping of refuse on Ditton Common, Surrey; and whether, as this area is a natural and charming open space which will be spoilt if this proposal is carried out, he will intervene with the object of preserving it.

I have seen reference to the proposal in the Press. Any such proposal would, however, have to be submitted to the Surrey County Council as local planning authority, and I understand that that has not yet been done. Until that is done and the county council have had an opportunity of considering it, I can express no opinion. My right hon. Friend will keep in close touch with the county council about it.

Is there anything that my hon. Friend can do to persuade these Conservative-controlled local authorities to be more public-spirited when matters of this kind come before them?

Irrespective of the merits of this question, to turn Conservative into progressives is always very difficult, and sometimes impossible.

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that the hon. and gallant Member for Chertsey has already written to him and to the county council about this; and when it comes before him will he give a rather more definite and satisfactory answer than he has given now as to the action he will take?

It is not our function to answer such questions, but for the local authorities to take such action in the first instance, and we cannot interfere until they do so.

Will the hon. Member for Bedford (Mr. Skeffington-Lodge) consult with the hon. Member for Ince (Mr. T. Brown) about asking questions concerning other Members' constituencies?