8. Colonel Sir FREDERICK HALL
asked the President of the Board of Trade if, without detriment to the public interest, he can state what were the difficulties the Coal Controller found that precluded German prisoners of war from being employed in.mines; whether he is aware of the shortage of miners in this country owing to their having joined the Colours; and whether, considering the urgency of the matter, the difficulties referred to can be overcome, with a view to the employment of the prisoners in the manner indicated?
Sir A. STANLEY
The difficulties in the way of the introduction of German prisoners of war to work in coal mines are not such as can be readily overcome, but the Controller of Coal Mines is still considering to what extent they can be employed upon work connected with coal mining.
Sir F. HALL
If I put the question down in a fortnight's time, will the right hon. Gentleman be able to give me any information?
§ Mr. OUTHWAITE
Would it not be preferable to secure the exchange of British miners who are prisoners in Germany for German prisoners here?