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Mr. Heald : I campaigned for them.

Mr. Hughes : Some of us campaigned against them, but they came in all the same.

Many of these new things are wonderful, but the point that I was making earlier was that, if one pulls the plug by de-designating without the resources to ensure that the Surrey water, the footpaths and the pump houses have the resources, we shall be left with a lot of potentially brilliant estates, which will become run down and not be the sort of public wealth which we want it to be. That is a crucial issue for us in the Dockyard and Riverside ward on our side of the river and we are first in the de-designation priority list. That links with the hon. Lady's final point about the timetable for running down. I do not know whether she has seen the published timetable for de-designation, which the Government are working towards. It begins with south of the river in the current year, mid -1994 for Bermondsey

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Riverside, 1995 for Beckton and Wapping, 1996 for the Surrey peninsula in Southwark and Limehouse and Tower Hamlets, 1997 for Isle of Dogs, South Poplar and West Leamouth in Tower Hamlets and 31 March 1998 for the Royals and what are described as the remainder--East Leamouth and the riverside belt in Newham.

That is the timetable, but it is still flexible and I understand that the hon. Lady, like the rest of us who share those views, have been invited to talk to the Minister about that. We need to do so and ensure that the timetable reflects the views of the local authorities, the local communities and ourselves. In my case, I shall make it absolutely clear that we are not yet ready to agree because we do not think that the package deal is yet in place.

To return to the points about employment made by the hon. Member for Holborn and St. Pancras, yes, there have been a lot more jobs created, but he is right to say that every new job is not a net increase in jobs. Many jobs have been lost. There has been a net increase, but even a net increase of jobs does not necessarily mean jobs for the locals. I use that term generically because we are all aware of the issues. The issue is that, in areas of high unemployment, jobs on one's doorstep are the best. That was the merit of the docks in the past.

The hon. Member for Newham, South referred to the general duty. I have alluded to that point and we may want to beef it up in clause 5. He also referred to the importance of the maritime heritage. We must ensure that we maximise that. He also emphasised the need for appropriate infrastructure. We all echo his plea and hope that the houses will not be built without ensuring that there are schools, roads, parks and community facilities to support the people in the area.

The Minister was challenged in respect of his thesis that the docklands has been a wonderful development. Whatever we may think about how it was created, it has done many good things. I am aware that I am now entering controversial territory, but I hope that there will be agreement about my next point.

I am not making a party political point, but one of the reasons why a British National party councillor was elected in the Isle of Dogs was that if one lives in a community where one cannot get a job or a decent home or have all the facilities, and if on one's doorstep there are people with luxury jobs who earn huge salaries and live in luxury housing which they sometimes do not use for half the year and who are clearly living a totally different life, one thinks that the democratic process is letting one down.

Underlying the debate about byelaws, the important debate is that of the future of democracy in docklands. If the Minister has not heard adequately from the three councils concerned, in the case of Tower Hamlets, what the people need, he should talk also to the neighbourhood councils, including the Isle of Dogs and the Wapping neighbourhood councils, where elected representatives will tell him what the people need.

Ms Gordon : I want to tell the hon. Member and the House about a meeting in my constituency at which two sections of the community nearly came to blows--it was touch and go.

The King Edward memorial park, a little local park which is one of the few small areas of open waterfront, was, according to the plaque, given to the people of the

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area in perpetuity. A development company made a bid for a large part of that park to build a luxury tennis centre. Local people with money, who had lately moved into expensive housing in the area, attended the meeting. The older residents opposed the proposal because they wanted to keep access to the whole of their park in which there were knock-about tennis courts where the kids played after school which were well used and there was no charge. The wealthier people who had moved into the area said, "There isn't a decent tennis centre closer than Islington and it's about time we had one." The elderly residents were worried about their park. That meeting nearly came to blows. The development company had thugs seated around the auditorium. That is the kind of thing that is happening. People feel that they are being pushed out and that they have to fight for the few amenities that they have, let alone to gain more amenities from the LDDC.

Mr. Hughes : The hon. Lady is right. The Bill is clearly trying to improve the conditions of people who live and work in and visit docklands. I understand that, and that is why I am promoting the Bill. However, docklands as a whole will be judged by whether it improves the amenities in all respects for those who live and work in and visit the area.

As we are probably in the last few years of the docklands corporation, unless the Government understand that a fundamental change of attitude is still required so that people do not come in, make profits and leave, and do not simply put in their money for their own leverage and results, and unless the Government understand that we still have some of the largest problems in the country--and that means ending and narrowing the social divide--the history of docklands will be only partially successful. It will leave a legacy of discomfort, dissatisfaction and disrepair.

Mr. Spearing : I endorse what the hon. Gentleman said about the planned de-designation timetable, which is controversial in terms of the agreements on planning, particularly for the Royal docks. Does the hon. Gentleman agree that there is a factor which the Minister might bear in mind--I am sure that there will be conversations about it--in that the proposals for a single regeneration budget for London and a senior regional director in a multi-ministry team, undoubtedly in Canary wharf, will have great significance because included in the Secretary of State's non- statutory notice was the fact that the whole of the operation of the London Docklands development corporation will come within the purview of that team and a controversial senior civil servant, who has yet to be appointed ?

Mr. Hughes : I agree with that comment. We need to watch this space and ensure that we do not lose out in that respect.

I hope that the House will give the Bill a Second Reading. However, hon. Members must not think that it is the end of the battle for docklands to be as the people of docklands need them. That battle goes on. I hope that increasingly the Government will respond. But they will respond well only if they listen well and hear what the people of docklands north and south of the river say.

Question put and agreed to.

Bill accordingly read a Second time and committed.

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9.31 pm

Sitting suspended .

It being Ten o'clock, Madam Deputy Speaker--, pursuant to paragraph (5) of Standing Order No. 52 (Consideration of estimates), put the deferred Question on supplementary estimates, 1993-94.


That a further supplementary sum not exceeding £213,686,000 be granted to Her Majesty out of the Consolidated Fund to complete or defray the charges which will come in course of payment during the year ending on 31st March 1994 for expenditure by the Department of the Environment on subsidies, improvements and investments, payments to the Housing Corporation, payments to commute loan charges on grants to local authorities including the urban programme and urban development grant, and other sundry services.

The House divided : Ayes 170, Noes 33

Division No. 163] [10 pm


Ainsworth, Peter (East Surrey)

Alexander, Richard

Allason, Rupert (Torbay)

Alton, David

Amess, David

Ancram, Michael

Arbuthnot, James

Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham)

Arnold, Sir Thomas (Hazel Grv)

Atkins, Robert

Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)

Baker, Nicholas (Dorset North)

Baldry, Tony

Bates, Michael

Booth, Hartley

Boswell, Tim

Bottomley, Peter (Eltham)

Bowis, John

Brandreth, Gyles

Brazier, Julian

Bright, Graham

Brooke, Rt Hon Peter

Brown, M. (Brigg & Cl'thorpes)

Browning, Mrs. Angela

Burns, Simon

Burt, Alistair

Butler, Peter

Campbell, Menzies (Fife NE)

Carlile, Alexander (Montgomry)

Clappison, James

Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey

Congdon, David

Conway, Derek

Coombs, Simon (Swindon)

Cran, James

Davies, Quentin (Stamford)

Devlin, Tim

Dorrell, Stephen

Dover, Den

Duncan, Alan

Duncan-Smith, Iain

Durant, Sir Anthony

Evans, Jonathan (Brecon)

Evans, Nigel (Ribble Valley)

Evans, Roger (Monmouth)

Fabricant, Michael

Fairbairn, Sir Nicholas

Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)

Foster, Don (Bath)

Fox, Dr Liam (Woodspring)

Freeman, Rt Hon Roger

Gallie, Phil

Gillan, Cheryl

Gorst, John

Greenway, Harry (Ealing N)

Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth, N)

Grylls, Sir Michael

Hague, William

Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie

Hampson, Dr Keith

Hanley, Jeremy

Harris, David

Harvey, Nick

Hawkins, Nick

Hayes, Jerry

Heald, Oliver

Hendry, Charles

Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)

Hughes Robert G. (Harrow W)

Hughes, Simon (Southwark)

Hunter, Andrew

Jack, Michael

Jenkin, Bernard

Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)

Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)

Jones, Robert B. (W Hertfdshr)

Jopling, Rt Hon Michael

Kilfedder, Sir James

King, Rt Hon Tom

Kirkhope, Timothy

Kirkwood, Archy

Knapman, Roger

Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)

Knight, Greg (Derby N)

Knight, Dame Jill (Bir'm E'st'n)

Knox, Sir David

Kynoch, George (Kincardine)

Lang, Rt Hon Ian

Lawrence, Sir Ivan

Legg, Barry

Lennox-Boyd, Mark

Lidington, David

Lightbown, David

Lloyd, Rt Hon Peter (Fareham)

Lynne, Ms Liz

MacKay, Andrew

Maclean, David

McLoughlin, Patrick

Maddock, Mrs Diana

Malone, Gerald

Mans, Keith

Marlow, Tony

Martin, David (Portsmouth S)

Merchant, Piers

Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)

Mitchell, Sir David (Hants NW)

Moate, Sir Roger

Monro, Sir Hector

Moss, Malcolm

Nelson, Anthony

Neubert, Sir Michael

Nicholls, Patrick

Nicholson, David (Taunton)

Paice, James

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