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Housing Accommodation, Germany

Volume 641: debated on Friday 5 May 1961

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asked the Secretary of State for War if he will give an estimated date when all families with Servicemen in Germany will be properly housed.

On present calculations, the requirement should be met by December, 1963. These calculations will of course vary if circumstances do.

asked the Secretary of State for War, how many officers and other ranks are still awaiting satisfactory service accommodation in Germany.

2,432 officers and 8,686 other ranks are in normal War Department accommodation in Germany. 159 officers and 2,443 other ranks are accommodated in hotels, in private accommodation, or in quarters at weekend distance.

asked the Secretary of State for War what is his estimate of the number of families in the United Kingdom waiting to join Servicemen in Germany who are held up because of the lack of service accommodation.

asked the Secretary of State for War how many families of Servicemen in Germany have returned to the United Kingdom because of unsuitable accommodation or lack of accommodation.

Families are not sent to Germany unless accommodation is available for them. A small number have subsequently returned because they did not like the accommodation provided, but I regret the details are not available.

asked the Secretary of State for War how many families living with Service men in Dortmund, Munster and Minden, respectively, are still without Service housing accommodation; and when he estimates this problem in these three areas will be solved.

The Answer is:Dortmund—3 officers and 82 other ranks;Munster—21 officers and 182 other ranks;Minden—Nil officers and 137 other ranks.The immediate problem should be solved by mid 1963.

asked the Secretary of State for War how much money will be spent on new housing programmes to accommodate satisfactorily Service men in Germany during the current year.

Two and a half million pounds on Army Votes. In addition, 80 married quarters—cost about £350,000—will be built and charged to the Berlin city budget.

asked the Secretary of State for War to what extent he has made a survey of all families who have joined their Service men in Germany without official notification; how many have done so; whether he has instituted inquiries into their type of housing accommodation; and what they have revealed.

asked the Secretary of State for War what steps he has taken to introduce his caravan housing programme in Germany to house British Servicemen quickly; whether any orders for caravans have yet been placed; and whether they are to be provided by a British or German company.

The arrangements I announced in the House of Commons on 7th March were for the provision of sites by the Department, together with essential services to accommodate caravans. Caravans will be provided either by individuals or under unit or similar corporate arrangements. The setting up of sites will be the responsibility of Command or subordinate Headquarters.Enquiries have been made about the hirings of caravans in bulk number from or through N.A.A.F.I., and we have also received offers from British firms. At this stage I cannot say whether the caravans will be provided by a British or German Company; this will depend on who offers the most advantageous terms.

asked the Secretary of State for War if he will list the sites he has in mind for his caravan towns to house British Servicemen in Germany; and if he will give an estimate of how many families he hopes to accommodate.

Six garrisons are likely to be included: Verden, Celle, Soltan, Honne, Fallingbostel and Mustenlager. It is too early to say how many families will be accommodated.

asked the Secretary of State for War what response his caravan scheme to solve the Servicemen's housing problem in Germany has received from the respective unit commanders.