HC Deb 26 March 1984 vol 57 cc8-9
8. Mr. Mark Robinson

asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether he is satisfied with the progress of enveloping schemes for houses in Wales.

Mr. Wyn Roberts

A start has been made. Four enveloping schemes, involving 886 houses, have now been approved and I expect to announce at least two more before the summer. I hope that each of the remaining nine authorities which received supplements for enveloping within their 1984–85 housing allocations will also come forward with projects during the course of the year.

Mr. Robinson

Is my hon. Friend aware that £500,000 has already been made available to the Newport borough council for the Witham/Feering scheme in Newport? Can my hon. Friend confirm that an additional £250,000 will be made available to Newport borough council?

Mr. Roberts

I can confirm that Newport has already been notified of an additional £250,000 for this enveloping scheme.

Mr. Roy Hughes

Did the Minister notice the recent report on housing in Mid-Glamorgan, where death rates are reckoned to be 64 per cent. higher than the national average owing to the deplorable housing there? Does he not feel that a boost for the construction industry is vital rather than to put VAT on home improvement work, which was such a deplorable feature of the recent Budget?

Mr. Roberts

The hon. Gentleman is wrong to attribute the statistics he mentioned simply to housing in Mid-Glamorgan. There are, of course, many deficiencies in the area of that authority and many things that we accept should be put right.