§ 73. Mr. R. MORRISON
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury how many men are at present working overtime at the Royal Mint on the contract for Russian coinage?
From six to 12 men are employed on overtime, in this connection in adapting and setting up new machinery. This work must necessarily be done outside the ordinary hours of the Mint.
§ Mr. MORRISON
Is it not a fact that a number of men who were recently discharged from Woolwich Arsenal were employed in the making of medals and coins? Cannot these men be employed on this work?
In this case it is highly skilled work, and, unfortunately, unless it is taken after hours it interferes with the current operations in the Mint.
§ Mr. AUSTEN CHAMBERLAIN
What is the amount of new capital which the Government have invested in the Mint for this purpose?
I am afraid that I could not answer that question without notice. I do not know of any new capital. I have understood that this is an ordinary part of the regular work of the Mint, or at all events work which has been done for a considerable time.
§ Major HORE-BELISHA
How does the hon. Gentleman reconcile his answer to the supplementary question with the policy which the Government is pursuing elsewhere of degrading skilled men in Government establishments to unskilled work?