HC Deb 20 November 1928 vol 222 cc1536-7
38. Mr. RYE

asked the Secretary for Mines whether he has any information regarding the closing of a colliery at Ibstock, Leicestershire; whether this colliery has been permanently closed; and, if so, what steps are being taken to assist the workers concerned to find other employment?

Commodore KING

I understand that a part of this pit was closed last week, and I am informed by the owners that it is impossible to make any statement at present as to the prospect of reopening. It is hoped that the majority of the men affected will be able to obtain work at neighbouring collieries, and the local Employment Exchanges and the management of the collieries are working together with this object. I understand that work has already been found for several hundreds of the men.


Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that the reason given for the closing down of this pit was that it was owing to the competition of the sea-borne coal from Northumberland and Durham; and can he exercise a little pressure on the coalowners of Durham and Northumberland to induce them to abstain from this cut-throat competition which is closing down mines in the Midlands?


Has the competition not been intensified by the Eight Hours Act for which hon. Members opposite were responsible?

Commodore KING

I am afraid that these points do not arise from the question, and ought to be put down.


Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that the coalowners in Northumberland and Durham are endeavouring to keep their pits open by working at a loss?


Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman also aware that the owners in Northumberland and Durham will, very shortly, be still further hit by the effects of the de-rating scheme?