§ 1. Mr. HERRIOTTS
asked the Secretary for Mines whether, when a coal mine is stopped either temporarily or permanently, any inquiries are instituted by his Department as to the reasons for closing down; whether mineowners are always willing to supply such information; and, if not, what steps does he propose to take with a view to compelling the owners to forward the necessary information?
§ The SECRETARY for MINES (Mr. Shinwell)
It is the regular practice, when a pit is closed, for the owners to inform my Department of the cause, and no difficulty is experienced in obtaining this information.
§ Mr. HERRIOTTS
Am I to understand from the answer that the information is always supplied in every case, and supplied fully, and, if so, can any hon. Member of this House obtain the information concerning a specific colliery if he puts down a question?
§ Mr. BROOKE
Will my hon. Friend state in his reply whether there is any obligation upon a mineowner at the present moment to notify the Minister of closing down?
§ Mr. SHINWELL
I have ascertained that there is a legal obligation in point 1954 of time. As regards the first supplementary question, the information is in our possession with regard to the closing down of collieries, but, if my hon. Friend desires information concerning a specific pit, perhaps he will give me notice of the question.
§ Mr. HERRIOTTS
Is my hon. Friend aware that there is a wide-spread feeling among miners that occasionally a colliery is closed down, not because of economic, but because of other reasons?