asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps are being taken to speed up the completion of houses in Dumbarton and Clydebank; how many have yet been completed; how many will be completed this year; and what progress has been made in securing enough painters and electricians, and in helping contractors to get ahead with their contracts?
Priorities for labour and materials were obtained last year to enable the contractors to push ahead with the new houses at Dumbarton and Clydebank. No difficulties have arisen in getting materials, but there is a shortage of bricklayers, joiners and plumbers at the Dumbarton site and of joiners and builders' labourers at the Clydebank site. These requirements are known to the Ministry of Labour, who are trying to meet them. There are no outstanding requirements for painters or electricians. The number of houses under construction is 90 at Dumbarton and 314 at Clydebank. Of these, nearly 100 are nearing completion. Some of the new houses at Clydebank were damaged by enemy bombing, and repairs are still being carried out. It is difficult to estimate the total number of houses that will be completed this year, but 510 new houses have been completed in the two burghs since the outbreak of war. I can assure the hon. Member that I am doing everything in my power to expedite the work.