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Derequisitioned Properties (Tenants)

Volume 498: debated on Tuesday 1 April 1952

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asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government what steps he is taking, in view of his instructions to local authorities regarding derequisitioning, to ensure the protection of those living in properties so to be derequisitioned.

The hon. Member can be assured that before properties are derequisitioned local authorities will make any provision that is necessary for tenants who occupy the premises as licensees.

But is not the Minister aware that men and women are being turned out of houses, that in fact they are served with derequisitioning notices and told to find whatever accommodation they can? Is not the Minister also aware that this kind of thing is causing great hardship and real suffering to large sections of the community, and will he, in the light of this, send a similar circular to the local authorities either urging them to do something about it or to slow down the rate of derequisitioning?

In almost every case the local authorities offer the person affected alternative accommodation—[HON. MEMBERS: "No."]—but if the hon. Gentleman has any individual case in mind, and will be good enough to let my right hon. Friend have it, he will look into it.

In view of that answer to the supplementary question of my hon. Friend, is the hon. Gentleman aware that in Birmingham there are over 12,000 houses which are derequisitioned? Therefore, how can he say that the local authority finds alternative accommodation when there are already 60,000 on the register of the Estates Department waiting for houses?

The hon. Gentleman said that there are over 12,000 houses de-requisitioned—

They are to be de-requisitioned, but the local authorities will not derequisition them until they find alternative accommodation for the tenants.