Dispersal Scheme, Midlands (Unoccupied Houses).

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Supply. – in the House of Commons on 29th July 1942.

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Photo of Mr Walter Higgs Mr Walter Higgs , Birmingham West

asked the Minister of Supply whether he is aware that the Government have provided 100 houses in connection with a dispersal scheme in the Midlands; that the expenditure has been between £70,000 and £80,000, and that only a small number of these houses are at present occupied owing to the reluctance of workers to move to new accommodation, resulting in a serious waste of petrol, tyres and time in providing omnibuses to take the workers to and from their original homes; and will he make arrangements to have these houses inhabited forthwith?

Photo of Sir Andrew Duncan Sir Andrew Duncan , City of London

Yes, Sir. Out of 100 houses, 62 are completed to date, of which 26 were completed within the last week. Twenty of the houses are already occupied. I do not anticipate any difficulty in filling the houses, whether by the workers affected by the original dispersal scheme or by the employees of other vital contractors.

Photo of Mr Walter Higgs Mr Walter Higgs , Birmingham West

Is the Minister aware I have information that workers will not go to these houses, and does he intend allowing this state of affairs to continue?

Photo of Sir Andrew Duncan Sir Andrew Duncan , City of London

No, Sir. I have no doubt that the hon. Member has information that a great many of the workers are content to travel long distances rather than transfer their households, but no difficulty is anticipated at all in regard to the occupation of these houses.