Mr Niall MacDermot: At my right hon. Friend's request, the University Grants Committee has made provision for a substantial increase in the number of university places for students of planning. They expect to see an extra 250 full-time and 250 part-time places by 1972. Additional places will also be available outside the universities.
Mr Niall MacDermot: We share the concern expressed by the chief planner. It is for that reason that we took these steps and we hope by 1974 to have doubled the number of qualified planners in this country. As for the new planning system, I hope that as a result of it we will make better use of qualified planning staff and reduce the work on detailed matters, because this will tend to alleviate rather than...
Mr Niall MacDermot: I do not see how one can attract more recruits unless one makes places available for them.
Mr Niall MacDermot: I understand that there are formidable technical problems in establishing the effect of a proposed building on television reception; and I see difficulty in requiring a developer to provide a service on land which is not in his ownership or under his control.
Mr Niall MacDermot: I would be glad to look into any possible solution of this; problem, but I do not know whether the matter is dealt with in France as part of their system of planning control.
Mr Niall MacDermot: A circular on planning control of radio masts has just been sent to planning authorities. A copy is available in the Library, and I will send one to the hon. Gentleman. Planning control applies to nationalised industries as to other developers.
Mr Niall MacDermot: If the hon. Gentleman is referring to the position from the point of view of compensation for statutory undertakers—I gather that he has that in mind by his reference to gasometers—then that matter has been dealt with in the planning legislation.
Mr Niall MacDermot: The hon. Member has let my right hon. Friend have information about the difficulties that gave rise to his Question. We will consider this together with other evidence when the Use Classes Order is reviewed shortly.
Mr Niall MacDermot: Certainly, and I shall be glad to receive any further evidence hon. Members may have on this subject.
Mr Niall MacDermot: These recommendations were adopted by the Assembly of the Council of Europe only last month and will now be considered by the Government.
Mr Niall MacDermot: Yes, Sir, and I am glad to say that in general terms I welcome the report and the recommendations. It may be that we shall have reservations on individual recommendations, but they will be carefully considered and we shall see what follow-up action, if any, is needed.
Mr Niall MacDermot: I think that when my right hon. Friend reads the report he will see that what it is recommending is regional planning of Europe.
Mr Niall MacDermot: Local authorities in the Northern Region were recently informed of the Land Commission's willingness to acquire on their behalf derelict land suitable for development.
Mr Niall MacDermot: We have notified all local authorities that this service is available to them. The local authorities in the Northern Region receive very substantial grant—85 per cent.—for this purpose, but a number of them have been handicapped by not having suitable staff available to deal with the acquisition of sites. It is this service that the Land Commission will be able to provide.
Mr Niall MacDermot: Perhaps I might reply to the right hon. Gentleman's remarks, as my Department has a general oversight over the compensation code. I do not think that there is any confusion about the way in which these provision will work. I think that the matters to which my noble Friend, Lord Beswick, was referring were some rather peripheral ones which came up in the debate in the other place and raised...
Mr Niall MacDermot: I beg to move Amendment 23, in page 11, line 22, at end insert: (3) Where an enforcement notice relates to a breach of planning control consisting in— (a) the carrying out without planning permission of building, engineering, mining or other operations in, on, over or under land; or(b) the failure to comply with any condition or limitation which relates to the carrying out of such...
Mr Niall MacDermot: May I hasten to assure the hon. Member and the House that the Government have decided nothing of the sort. We shall be delighted to complete this business by midnight, if we have the co-operation of the House. It may take a little longer.
Mr Niall MacDermot: I hear the hon. Gentleman the Member for Crosby (Mr. Graham Page) say that it is for the Opposition to decide how long they wish to debate these matters, and I quite accept that.
Mr Niall MacDermot: Mr. MacDermot rose—
Mr Niall MacDermot: No, we want to make progress. The Amendment is to meet an undertaking given in Committee to confine the abolition of the four-year rule on enforcement notices to those cases in which the mischief is established. I undertook to restore the four-year rule in the case of enforcement notices relating to any breach of planning control consisting in the carrying out of building or any other...