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Government Property

Volume 941: debated on Wednesday 14 December 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the approximate amount of office space held on lease by each Government Department that was vacant on 30th September 1977; what this figure is as a percentage of the total leasehold holding of each Government Department; and what is the rent that is being paid for these unoccupied offices.

Vacant office space is held against the PSA civil estate as a whole and is not apportioned to individual Departments. On 30th September 1977 it amounted to 639,000 square feet, about 1·5 per cent. of the total leased estate. Rent on these premises totals some £1,142,000 per annum.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the total value of rents paid by each Government Department for office premises held on lease.

Most offices for Government Departments are provided as a common service by the Property Services Agency (PSA) and individual rents are not charged. The total rent bill expected to be paid in 1977–78, including rents of property occupied jointly with Government agencies from which PSA receives rent, is £104·6 million.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will state the total net area in square feet of offices held on lease or by freehold, respectively, by each Government Department as at 30th September 1977; and the percentage increase or decrease in each case in the amount owned or leased between 31st March 1974 and 30th September 1977.

The information required is not immediately available in the form requested. I will write to the hon. Member as soon as possible.