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Maternity Grants

Volume 959: debated on Wednesday 29 November 1978

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when the present level of maternity grants was introduced; what has been the increase in the retail price index since then; and what is his estimate of the percentage increase in the cost of (a) a perambulator and (b) a layette for a new baby.

The maternity grant was increased to its present level of £25 in November 1969. Between November 1969 and October 1978, the movement in the general index of retail prices represented an increase of 188-9 per cent. I have no estimate of the percentage increase in the cost of a perambulator and a layette, but would expect it to be similar to the general increase in retail prices.