HOUSING AND SLUMS [To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.]
Sui,—Are we not in danger of being deluded by the constant reiteration of the fact that a million new houses have been completed since the Armistice ? It seems to colour all official references to Housing, as witness that in the King's Speech at the prorogation of Parliament, which, after recording the progress made in building new houses, makes the remarkable claim that " substantial progress is also being made with the clearance of insanitary areas and the rehousing of displaced tenants."
While the million new houses, of which about 750,000 are State-aided, tenanted for the most part by the better-paid workers, are costing the Exchequer nearly ten millions a year, the grant in respect of losses incurred by schemes for the clearance of unhealthy areas and rehousing amounts to no more than 165,000 for • the current year.
Knowing how costly slum clearance schemes are and what small results such a sum represents, one may well feel aghast that this should by any one be considered " sub- stantial progress." What is the explanation ?—I am, Sir, &e.,
FRANK M. ELGOOD, Chairman.
National Housing and Town Planning Council, 41 Russell Square, London, W.C.1.