HC Deb 04 March 1887 vol 311 cc1262-3
MR. KIMBER (Wandsworth)

asked the Secretary to the Board of Trade, Whether his attention has been called to the case of Messrs. Robbins and Appleton, agents in this country of the Waltham Watch Manufacturing Company, who, having an order for Australia for 400 Waltham watches, and having the movements in their possession, and desiring to have them cased in this country, unhall-marked, but, in American style, marked "sterling 925,1000," applied to the Goldsmiths' Company for permission to have the order executed; whether such permission was refused, on the ground that it was illegal for any watch case manufacturers in the United Kingdom to be exempted from the compulsory obligation of assay and hall-marking; whether, as a consequence, the order had to be executed in America, to the loss of English watch case makers of an order for 400 cases, and an estimated loss of 10,000 cases per annum; whether Her Majesty's Government will consider the expediency, in the interest of British industry, of abolishing the compulsory obligation of assay of watch cases manufactured in the United Kingdom for export abroad; whether he is aware that parts of the works of watches are made abroad, and put together sometimes with other parts made in this country, and that the Merchandize Marks Act (1862) Amendment Bill makes no provision for such cases; and, whether the Government intend to introduce any amendments to apply to them; and, if so, how they will be dealt with?

THE SECRETARY (Baron HENRY DE WORMS) (Liverpool, East Toxteth)

The Board of Trade have not had their attention called to the case referred to by the hon. Member, and they are informed that no such application has been made to the Goldsmiths' Company as is stated in the Question. The rest of the Question of the hon. Member refers to matters which can be better explained when the Merchandise Marks Act (1862) Amendment Bill is in Committee, than dealt with in the form of an answer to a question now.