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Merseyside (Ministerial Meeting)

Volume 14: debated on Monday 30 November 1981

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment whom he met on his visit to Merseyside on 26 and 27 November; who was present at his working meetings; what subjects the meetings were about; and if he will make a statement on progress in the area.

I met members of the Merseyside task force, a number of voluntary organisations, representatives of trade unions and some local industrialists. I opened the new Wimpey venture housing development at Kensington Fields.The Merseyside task force group of seconded managers and officials is pursuing actively the initiatives which I announced on 5 August. The task force is working closely with members of private and public bodies. Progress is being made on a number of fronts—for example 1,000 training schemes have been negotiated; proposals are well advanced for the establishment of commercial business training centres; and Unilever has set up a small firms workshop on the Wirral. Proposals are also well advanced for workshops in Liverpool.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement on the progress made on Friday 13 November at his meetings with the Merseyside county council and Liverpool city council; and what conclusions were reached when discussing the housing issues with representatives from Liverpool, Wirral and Knowsley.

[pursuant to his reply, 26 November 1981, c. 466]: I discussed with the county council its initial proposals for Merseyside. These and other proposals are now being considered by county council and task force officials. At the subsequent meeting with the leaders of Liverpool, Knowsley and Wirral councils I discussed in outline what steps could conceivably be taken to improve housing conditions on Merseyside. These items are also being taken forward by officials in the first instance.