HC Deb 30 May 1916 vol 82 c2573
67. Sir R. COOPER

asked the President of the Local Government Board if he has considered the advantage to the country during the War of closing all retail shops at certain specified hours on certain days of the week for the purpose of affording single-handed men an opportunity of serving in the Volunteer Corps or of generally rendering voluntary service in other directions; if so, does he contemplate giving an early effect to such a proposal?


My right hon. Friend has asked me to reply to this question. The possibility of enforcing the general adoption of earlier closing hours during the War was considered by the Shops Committee which sat last year. I would refer the hon. Baronet to the observations on the subject on page 7 of their Report. It would not be possible in my opinion to undertake any legislation on the lines suggested unless clear evidence were forthcoming that there was a strong and general desire for it among all classes of retail traders, and that public opinion generally would favour it.