In reply to a parliamentary question Mr Soames detailed the disposal of 5,348 houses in the period April 1995 to Summer 1996. The MOD's target for disposal, agreed with the department of the environment as part of the government Empty Homes programme, was 4,000.
Commenting on this success in a speech to the Empty Homes Agency Conference, Colin James, chief executive of the Defence Housing Executive which manages Service housing for the MOD, said:
'This represents the disposal of one house every 35 minutes of every working day of the 18 month target period.
Others, identified as temporarily surplus, will be considered for short term letting. The disposal of surplus homes remains a high priority for the MOD'.