asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what expenditure has been approved under Circular 70 of 1974 in respect of the acquisition of completed or partially completed houses by local authorities; what total expenditure is expected in the years 1974–75 and 1975–76; and how many units of accommodation have been and are likely to be purchased.
In the present financial year up to 31st January 1975 approval had been given to the acquisition by local authorities in England and Wales of 10,755 dwellings at an estimated cost of some £108 million. Of this sum it is likely that some £85 million will be spent in 1974–75. I believe that the situation in the private market has begun to improve as a result of this and other measures taken by the Government. It is not possible to make a forecast of further possible acquisitions of this kind.