asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he proposes that the Thamesmead estate should be transferred to Thamesmead town, and if he will make a statement.
[pursuant to his reply, 2 April 1987, c. 603]: I have today directed the London residuary body, under section 65 of the Local Government Act 1985, to dispose of Thamesmead to Thamesmead town by 18 May 1987. The financial terms are designed with the twin objectives of enabling the company to remain viable and protecting the interests of London ratepayers. Because the financial position of the company depends critically on the number of sales to sitting tenants and of vacant dwellings which it can achieve, it will make an initial payment to the LRB of £2·5 million but will pay a proportion of the receipts from sales thereafter. The company will therefore have an incentive to maximise sales and so to maximise the price paid to the LRB. I have placed a full description of the financial and other terms in the Library of the House.I should like to congratulate the residents of Thamesmead on their decision to run their own affairs independent of any public sector control. I wish them, their elected board members, staff and chairman Clive Thornton every success in completing and managing their town.