§ 20. Mr. Bossom
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works and Buildings whether his Department possesses any statistics regarding the number of building trade operatives, skilled and unskilled, still employed upon non-essential work; and are there any building trade operatives unoccupied, but standing by, ready to make repairs in the event of serious enemy action?
§ Mr. Hicks
Continuous action is taken through the operation of the Civil Building Licensing Control, and in other ways, to ensure, as far as possible, that no building and civil engineering work is carried out which is not of an essential character. I have no statistics to indicate the number of workers still so employed, 1039 but a close investigation is now being made. With regard to the second part of the Question, there are no building trade operatives kept unoccupied in order to be available to do urgent air damage repair work.
§ Mr. Bossom
Is my hon. Friend aware that if one goes by almost any of these bombed places, one sees men messing about trying to straighten up these places, and does he know how many men are needed on work essential for carrying on the war which is still delayed at the present time?
§ Mr. Bossom
Is my hon. Friend aware that if he takes a walk from the House to Oxford Circus, he will see at least 100 men doing literally nothing at the present time?