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Slum Clearance, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne

Volume 527: debated on Tuesday 18 May 1954

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asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government what specific schemes for slum clearance have been submitted to him by the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Corporation; what were the dates on which they were submitted; and what replies he has given.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Housing and Local Government
(Mr. Ernest Marples)

The council has submitted no new schemes since the war but my right hon. Friend understands that it has the matter under immediate consideration.

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that in Newcastle-upon-Tyne scores of thousands of people are living in most appalling, decaying slum property? Does not he think that his reply is shocking? Will he use his good offices to see that this local authority does something to clear the slums in Newcastle?

I do not think it is a shocking reply. I think the fact that the Newcastle Health Committee passed a resolution on 10th May declaring a clearance area of 420 houses, with 1,872 occupants, shows that it is approaching my right hon. Friend's proposals in the right spirit.

Nine years after the war, scores of thousands in the city are living in slum property and not a single scheme has yet been submitted to the Minister. Is not that shocking?

Not really, because the rate of house building is 60 per cent, above that of the previous Administration. I think that a rate of over 300,000 houses a year is not unsatisfactory.