Housing.

Oral Answers to Questions — Scotland. – in the House of Commons on 12th December 1922.

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Photo of Mr George Buchanan Mr George Buchanan , Glasgow Gorbals

35.

asked the First Commissioner of Works, as representing the Secretary for Scotland, if he is aware that the city of Glasgow requires 57,000 new houses, and in that city the number of houses condemned as unfit for habitation is 13,000; and what steps will he take to both urge and help the local authority to solve both of those problems?

Photo of Mr John Baird Mr John Baird , Ayr District of Burghs

My Noble Friend is aware of the estimates on which the figures given are based. As regards the last part of the question, the provision to be made under the State-aided housing scheme includes the building of 4,854 houses by the corporation, 102 houses by public utility societies, and 142 houses by private enterprise. It is understood that the corporation are also preparing a slum clearance scheme in respect of which, if approved, they will be entitled to participate in the annual State grant of £30,000 earmarked for this purpose. The question of further assistance being given by the State to enable local authorities to deal with the housing problem is at present engaging the attention of the Government.

Photo of Mr George Buchanan Mr George Buchanan , Glasgow Gorbals

In regard to the slum clearances, which only apply to 400 houses of 13,000, will the right hon. Gentleman take steps to have it applied to the whole 13,000?

Photo of Mr John Baird Mr John Baird , Ayr District of Burghs

I will communicate with my right hon. Friend.

Photo of Mr Robert Nichol Mr Robert Nichol , Renfrewshire Eastern

37.

asked the First Commissioner of Works, as representing the Secretary for Scotland, whether he is aware that house factors in Glasgow and the West of Scotland have issued letters to tenants stating that the present Government, through the Prime Minister, has given to the country indication that proprietors will not be called upon to refund rents under the Kerr v. Bryde decision, and demanding continued payment of the increase of rent decreed to be illegal; and whether he will take steps to have the confusion in this matter cleared up?

Photo of Mr John Baird Mr John Baird , Ayr District of Burghs

My Noble Friend has had his attention drawn to a case in which a Glasgow house factor has issued a letter of the kind referred to in the first part of the question. As regards the second part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to his question on this subject yesterday.

Photo of Mr Robert Nichol Mr Robert Nichol , Renfrewshire Eastern

As the answer given yesterday conveyed nothing, may I ask if the communication referred to has not caused more confusion in Scotland than the original scheme of the Prime-Minister's indication?

Photo of Mr John Baird Mr John Baird , Ayr District of Burghs

I think everybody can form their own opinion upon it.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Linlithgowshire

In view of the answers given to these questions, will the right hon. Gentleman bring pressure to bear upon the Prime Minister to have somebody on the Treasury Bench who understands something about Scottish affairs?