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Strathclyde (Structure Plan)

Volume 940: debated on Wednesday 30 November 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what discussions he has had with Strathclyde Regional Council on the proposals contained in the council's structural plan.

Strathclyde Region has recently circulated a draft structure plan for consideration by district councils and other interests and it will not be submitted to my right hon. Friend until their comments have been received and considered.

Will the hon. Gentleman make clear to the regional council that those of us with constituencies within the region would very much like to lay hands on a copy of the plan in order that we may comment on it as well? Will he also make clear to the council that he will not tolerate a rundown in the new towns programme whilst saving Glasgow?

The hon. Lady asks "May I have a copy of the plan?" In Monday's newspapers people were asked to send in for a copy and the newspapers even gave a telephone number, so it pays to read the newspapers, especially the Scottish newspapers.

It is not a question of saving Glasgow. In 1975 the then Secretary of State put out a consultative document in which he said that new towns should be more representative of the democratic make-up of Scotland as a whole. We are very conscious of the problems of new towns as well as the problems of Glasgow. The hon. Lady talks about land. To try to be helpful to her, I read all the SNP documents. I read its land policy, and the only thing I learned was in paragraph 6, which says "'Land' means lands"—

Is not my hon. Friend being far too kind in his reply? Is it not a terrible thing that a Member of Parliament from the West of Scotland should treat the problems of Glasgow in the way in which they have been treated this afternoon, especially when the SNP so much exploits the figures showing the needs of Glasgow? Should not my hon. Friend reject this with contempt on behalf of the people of Scotland?

Before you excelled me, Mr. Speaker, I was going on to put the sting in the tail, but I always follow the guidance of the Chair. I agree with my hon. Friend the Member for Renfrew-shire, West (Mr. Buchan). The SNP's attitude to the problems of Glasgow is totally reprehensible. It must start thinking seriously and with a more honest outlook about the problems of Strathclyde in general.