asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the estimated cost of the proposed rebuilding of Boratton Park School, Baschurch, Salop; how this cost is shared between tax and rate finance, respectively; what advice was sought by and tendered to the West Midland Children's Committee on the relative advantages of continuing with the present building; and if she will make a statement.
The Childrens Regional Planning Committee for Area 4—the West Midlands—has accepted a recommendation, from a working party of the committee, that Boratton Park School should be rebuilt. It has also recommended that the project should have first priority in the capital programme for 1976–77. Local authorities have not yet, however, been invited to submit their bids for projects to be included in that programme.The estimated cost of the main phase of the rebuilding is £850,000 and no estimate has yet been received for the rest of the project. Expenditure on the building would be met by local authority borrowing, the loan charges on which would be relevant expenditure for rate support grant purposes, but a secure unit embodied in the project could in due course attract direct Government grant if the enabling powers I propose to seek by way of an amendment to the Children Bill are granted.