THE SLUM PROBLEM
[To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.] accordance with the wishes of the B.B.C. Mr. John Galsworthy's Easter Sunday appeal for the Housing Associa- tions in London was for donations only.
I am desired to point out, however, that in a letter which appeared in the Times on the previous Wednesday, the Rt. Hon. Sir Willoughby H. Dickinson (chairman of the London Council of Social Service), Lt.-Col. C. Waley Cohen (chairman of the Mansion House Council on Health and Housing), and Sir Edgar Bonham-Carter (chairman of the Joint Housing Committee of the two Councils), extended that appeal. The Lord Mayor, it was stated, would be pleased to receive not only the donations resulting from Mr. Galsworthy's appeal, but any capital loans that might be offered at a low rate of interest.
The fifteen housing associations already at work could immediately expend £150,000 upon the better housing of the poorest members of the community ; and fresh associations are being formed in boroughs where formerly there were none.
The properties of these housing associations are administered on the just and humane lines learned from Octavia Hill. The reciprocal duties of landlord and tenant are maintained. Losses on rents arc eliminated by their regular collection with practically no arrears ; losses on repairs are checked by immediate attention to any damage ; result, better rooms at lower rents, better landlords, better tenants.
There is no need to dwell in the columns of the Spectator upon the physical misery, the moral degradation and the political danger of the uncared-for slums ; besides, they have now been drawn (and broadcast) by a master hand. May I add that, before he uttered a word of appeal to others, Mr. Galsworthy had sent the Lord Mayor a hundred guineas as his contribution to the Fund.
This Fund—the London Housing Associations Fund—is being received by the Lord Mayor at the Mansion House. The trustees who will allocate the Fund amongst the housing associations are the three writers to the Times, and Sir Vansittart Bowater and Mr. E. C. Grenfell, the members of Parliament for the City of London.—I am, Sir, &c., 1 Lincoln's Inn Fields, W.C.2.