HC Deb 13 March 1941 vol 369 cc1414-5
42. Dr. Little

asked the Minister of Supply whether he will have samples taken in additional districts of Northern Ireland where there are deposits of iron ore, with a view to the establishment of what would be a valuable war industry in Ulster?

Mr. Macmillan

The iron ore measures in Northern Ireland have been investigated generally; the deposits at a particular spot appeared to be the most promising, and special steps were, therefore, taken to determine the quality and quantity of the ironstone in this area. I am advised that no other area would justify similar special investigation.

Sir Hugh O'Neill

Is the Minister aware that up to about 20 years ago there were very considerable shipments of low-grade iron ore from County Antrim to Middlesbrough, where it was mixed with Bilbao ore of a higher grade; and if there is a shortage of iron ore, could not anything be done to resuscitate this industry?

Mr. Macmillan

That is the purpose of the investigation which is now going on in this particular place.