HC Deb 10 August 1905 vol 151 c952

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the danger of a general strike in the cotton trade in Lancashire and elsewhere, and whether he proposes to take any action in this grave matter.


The Board of Trade are fully aware of the circumstances referred to in my hon. friend's Question, and if we have reason to believe that our intervention is likely to be useful we shall at once take the steps which seem to us best in accordance with the Conciliation Act, 1896. In the meantime I feel strongly that the longest period possible should be secured for negotiations. As the position stands at present I am informed that the notices which have been given do not all expire on the same date, and I earnestly hope that steps may be taken with the approval of both parties to secure that all the notices shall terminate on the latest date.

SIR J. FERGUSSON (Manchester, N.E.)

Does not the Conciliation Act provide for the intervention of the Board of Trade in the event of a strike being apprehended?


Certainly we have that power, but we are only to act if we think our action will be useful.