§ 3. Mr. Hannan
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will now instruct local authorities to proceed with the demolition of surface air raid shelters.
§ 7. Mr. Hector Hughes
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is aware that there are still many air raid shelters in the City of Aberdeen which restrict the drying green space and amenities of the occupants of the respective houses;that the practice of his Department not to sanction the removal of such air raid shelters unless they are structurally dangerous, cannot be economically repaired, are dangerous to health and morals or prevent approved development, is too narrow and rigid, and inflicts hardships on many occupants of houses whose drying green space and amenities are restricted;and if he will relax and extend the practice of his Department in such a way as to enable these grievances to be removed.
§ 9. Mrs. Cullen
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland when he intends to have air raid shelters demolished, especially those in the back courts of tenement property.
§ Mr. J. Stuart
It is the policy of Her Majesty's Government to preserve all sound air raid shelters unless there are compelling grounds for demolition. I am always prepared to consider whether, in particular cases— because of the effects on health or amenity or for other reasons — such grounds exist.
§ Mr. Hannan
In view of the fact that we are now ten years away from the last 1802 war, and the fact that these shelters would be quite ineffective in a nuclear age, is it not possible for a general order to be given for their complete demolition?
§ Mr. Stuart
We have to take into account the fact that, in a fall-out area, they might be of some use, but I agree that this is a matter we must keep under consideration. Until better arrangements can be discovered, I do not think that it would be wise to demolish the whole lot.
§ Mr. Woodburn
Is the right hon. Gentleman coming to recognise the folly of having built air raid shelters for only one purpose? If they had been built so that they could serve a civil purpose as well as a war-time one, they would not be merely eyesores. Will the right hon. Gentleman take this into account in respect of any further shelters to be built, so that they may serve a peace-time use as well as a war-time one?
§ Mr. Hughes
Does the Secretary of State realise that these drying greens mentioned in my Question mean as much to the poor as extensive gardens do to the rich? Is it not a disgraceful thing to continue to deprive them of these amenities, and will the right hon. Gentleman take urgent steps to see that their amenities are restored?
§ Mr. Stuart
I realise how annoying it is to have these drying greens obstructed in this way, and I should be glad to see the shelters cleared out if possible.