Land Requirements

Oral Answers to Questions — Local Government – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 1st March 1966.

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Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames 12:00 am, 1st March 1966

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he is now prepared to grant loan sanction to local authorities for the purchase of land for future requirements; and what limit he intends to impose on the total expenditure for this purpose which he will authorise in the coming financial year.

Photo of Mr Richard Crossman Mr Richard Crossman , Coventry East

I am prepared to authorise purchase of land in advance of requirements only where there is special need. I cannot say what total expenditure will be authorised for this purpose in the coming year.

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

Does not the restriction to cases of special need to local authorities go very ill with the intention to provide £45 million for the Land Commission to use for the same purpose? Would it not be better to apply this money to the existing and perfectly competent local authorities?

Photo of Mr Richard Crossman Mr Richard Crossman , Coventry East

Certainly we are applying it through the local authorities, but the right hon. Gentleman will appreciate that even when we do this we must take care to ensure that it is wisely used. The particular source—purchases under benefit and improvement—have risen from £8 million to £21 million per annum in three years, and we felt that it was time to look very carefully at this matter.