Land Commission

Oral Answers to Questions — Land and Natural Resources – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th May 1965.

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Photo of Mr Evelyn King Mr Evelyn King , South Dorset 12:00 am, 10th May 1965

asked the Minister of Land and Natural Resources whether, in the proposals he will bring forward for a Crown Land Commission, he will devise nomenclature to distinguish between the phrase Crown Land, as used in the older sense, and any land which may subsequently be vested in the new Land Commission.

Photo of Mr Evelyn King Mr Evelyn King , South Dorset

In view of the fact that confusion will be caused by the use of the word "Crown" in this highly controversial piece of party legislation based on nationalisation, will the Minister undertake not to bolster it up by using the name "Crown"?

Photo of Mr Frederick Willey Mr Frederick Willey , Sunderland North

This is a piece of necessary legislation which will be generally welcomed, but I appreciate the point which the hon. Gentleman has raised.

Photo of Mr Hector Hughes Mr Hector Hughes , Aberdeen North

Is the Minister aware that there is a striking difference between the phraseology and nomenclature in English law and that in Scottish law, which is derived largely from and based on Roman law? Will he take that into account for the benefit of the ordinary citizen who will have to construe any Measures which he introduces?

Photo of Mr Frederick Willey Mr Frederick Willey , Sunderland North

I am aware of that, but I would ask my hon. and learned Friend to address his observations about Scottish law to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland.

Photo of Mr George Jackson Mr George Jackson , Brighouse and Spenborough

asked the Minister of Land and Natural Resources, if he will now announce the setting up of the Land Commission; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Mr Cyril Bence Mr Cyril Bence , Dunbartonshire East

asked the Minister of Land and Natural Resources if he will take steps to enable local authorities to acquire land for essential house building at reasonable prices.

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

My right hon. Friend will be introducing legislation to set up a Land Commission and to deal with the problem of land prices as soon as possible.

Photo of Mr George Jackson Mr George Jackson , Brighouse and Spenborough

Can my hon. Friend tell me whether during the period in which this legislation is being prepared there has been any drying up of the land available for building development?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

No, Sir. We have no such evidence.

Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames

Will this legislation be preceded by a White Paper? If it is, in order to keep himself in the fashion will the Minister have the White Paper debated and then be prepared to listen?

Photo of Mr Cyril Bence Mr Cyril Bence , Dunbartonshire East

Is my hon. Friend aware that if a White Paper were issued on land prices it would be found that in the last 15 years land prices have rocketed nearly 1,000 per cent. and that huge fortunes have been made out of land? Will he do something to stop this exploitation of people's needs for housing by stopping this racket in land prices?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

The rise in the cost of land is common knowledge and the only way of dealing with it is by the legislation which my right hon. Friend has in mind.

Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames

Will the hon. Member be good enough to answer my question as to his right hon. Friend's intention about a White Paper?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

I apologise to the right hon. Gentleman for not answering the whole of his question, but I do not altogether understand the second part of it. On the purely factual part of the question, it is intended to publish a White Paper.

Photo of Sir Arthur Irvine Sir Arthur Irvine , Liverpool Edge Hill

Arising out of the supplementary question asked by my hon. Friend the Member for Dunbartonshire. East (Mr. Bence), will my hon. Friend at least agree, so that we may have it on the record, that it is entirely wrong that when a local authority compulsorily acquires land for housing or other social purposes it should have to pay, within the compulsory acquisition price, that element of value which derives from the planning permission which it itself gave?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

This view is entirely shared by the Government.