Shelters.

Oral Answers to Questions — Civil Defence. – in the House of Commons on 29th May 1941.

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Photo of Mr Ellis Smith Mr Ellis Smith , Stoke-on-Trent Stoke

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will call together at once the competent people in the constructional engineering and building industry, and other people, for the purpose of preparing a large-scale national scheme for the provision of strong air-raid shelters in areas where they are urgently required, and, later, in all industrial centres?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

For the reasons explained in the answer which the Joint Parliamentary Secretary gave to a Question by the hon. Member for West Leyton (Mr. Sorensen) on 2nd April, I do not contemplate any such revision of our shelter policy as my hon. Friend suggests, and accordingly I do not think that any useful purpose would be served by a conference of this kind. The matter is, of course, under constant observation by my expert advisers.

Photo of Mr Cecil Wilson Mr Cecil Wilson , Sheffield, Attercliffe

asked the Home Secretary how many of the 20,000 Anderson shelters in Sheffield, admitted in April to be unfit for use, have now been rendered fit; when the remainder will be so rendered; how many men are now employed upon the work; whether the quality of their labour is thoroughly satisfactory; and what is the population served by the 20,000 shelters and that served by those still unfit for use?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

I am informed that 14,800 Anderson shelters in Sheffield remain to be treated. At the moment 275 men are employed upon this work. I cannot forecast when the work will be completed, as I am not satisfied with the rate of progress or the labour resources available and propose to look into the matter further. As regards the last part of the Question, it may be taken that the number of people affected is roughly in the ratio of four persons per shelter.