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Victoria Tower Repairs

Volume 499: debated on Tuesday 22 April 1952

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asked the Minister of Works for how long the Victoria Tower has been under repair; how much these repairs have cost to date; when the work is expected to be finished; how much the total cost will be; and what steps he is taking to get the work completed as quickly and as cheaply as possible.

Repairs to the stonework of the Victoria Tower started in 1937 and have cost about £300,000 to date. The work should be finished by the end of 1954 at a total estimated cost of £600,000. Within the limits imposed by finance and the supply of stone and stone-masons, the work is being carried out with reasonable speed. The work is done by contract on the basis of competitive tenders.

As the work started in 1937 and is not expected to be completed until 1954, is the Minister satisfied that time is being used economically and that we are getting the best value for the taxpayers' money?

Undoubtedly we have lost money because of the war, as the scaffolding had to be removed and put up again. We cannot go faster owing to the limit on the number of craftsmen.