HC Deb 28 February 1939 vol 344 cc1061-2
24. Mrs. Tate

asked the President of the Board of Trade, under what authority machines are used instead of a yard-stick for the measurement of material in drapers' shops; whether these measuring machines are inspected and tested regularly by his inspectors; and whether they test the machines with material of varying thickness and texture?

Mr. Stanley

The Weights and Measures Acts do not require a yard-stick to be used for the measurement of drapers' materials. Measuring machines or instruments are among the methods of measurement that may legally be adopted. Certain patterns of measuring instruments have been approved by the Board of Trade for the measurement of "cloth or other textile materials of firm substance and surface," and instruments of these patterns may be, and are, tested with such materials and stamped by inspectors of weights and measures. Verification and inspection of these machines is not at present compulsory, but the question of making Regulations under the Weights and Measures Acts to that effect will be considered in connection with the general examination of the Regulations that is now taking place.

Mrs. Tate

Is my right hon. Friend aware that in the case of material being of a thick or stretching nature the purchaser is actually cheated out of two inches per yard?

Mr. R. Gibson

How frequently are these machines inspected?

Mr. Stanley

I could not say without notice.

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