HC Deb 15 September 1931 vol 256 cc663-4

asked the Secretary for Mines if he will give the number of men and boys killed in the coal-mining industry for the 12 months ending June, 1931, giving the districts where such accidents took place and the ages of the boys?


As the reply involves a number of figures, I will, with the hon. Member's permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.


Can the hon. Gentleman give me the ages of the boys who have been killed?

NUMBER OF PERSONS killed from Accidents at Mines under the Coal Mines Act, 1911 (except Stratified Ironstone Mines of Cleveland, Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire) during the 12 months ended 30th June, 1931.
District. Number of Persons killed aged
14 years. 15 years. 16 years. 17 years. 18 years and over. Total.
Scotland 4 1 1 2 141 149
Northumberland 1 2 29 32
Durham 5 4 90 99
Lancashire, Cheshire and North Staffordshire. 1 1 1 79 82
Yorkshire 2 3 5 3 140 153
North Derby and Nottingham 3 1 3 90 97
South Derby, Leicester, Cannock Chase and Warwick. 2 60 62
South Wales and Monmouth 3 7 4 3 181 198
Other Districts* 2 1 66 69
Great Britain 11 18 20 16 876 941
* Including Cumberland, Westmorland, North Wales, South Staffordshire, Worcester, Salop, Forest of Dean, Bristol, Somerset and Kent.

That will be set out in the tabular statement, but I will give the hon. Member the totals, which will be included. For boys aged 14 the number in the period specified was 11; aged 15 years, 18; aged 16 years, 20; aged 17 years, 16; over 18 years, 876. That makes the total in the period named of 941.


Will the hon. Gentleman take immediate steps to make inquiries into this huge loss of young life in the mines?


I imagine that has always been the subject of anxious concern on the part of my predecessors. I hope to continue that policy.


Can the hon. Gentleman say whether the discussions in the Northumberland district with regard to the high rate of fatalities among boys in mines have produced any result?


I am not aware that any result has yet been achieved. I know that there were discussions, for which the hon. Member was largely responsible, and I hope that that policy will be continued.


In order to assist in safeguarding young lives, would it not be as well to raise the school leaving age?

Following is the reply:

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