HC Deb 05 March 1940 vol 358 cc176-7
8. Mr. Denville

asked the Secretary for Mines how many coal dealers in Newcastle-on-Tyne ran short of coal during the recent hard weather?

The Secretary for Mines (Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd)

Most dealers were affected to some degree by the interruption of supplies caused by the weather, and some of the smaller retailers may have run temporarily out of stock, but I understand that there was no general shortage of coal in the district.

Mr. Denville

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that we have in the centre of Newcastle two coal mines which are not working, and will he in future send a little coal to us when we run short up there?

15. Mr. Leslie Boyce

asked the Secretary for Mines whether, in order to minimise the chances of a coal shortage next winter, he will consider the advisability of encouraging those householders, firms and institutions which have storage facilities, to lay down a stock, within prescribed limits, during the summer months, and thus lessen the demand for supplies and transport during the next peak-load period?

Mr. Lloyd

Yes, Sir. This is the policy which will certainly be pursued as soon as circumstances permit.

Mr. Shinwell

Why was that policy not persisted in when the hon. Gentleman was advised to follow it some months ago?

Mr. Lloyd

The circumstances of the time were wholly different.

Mr. Liddall

Will the encouragement take the form of lower prices?