HC Deb 27 May 1943 vol 389 cc1733-4
55. Mr. De la Bére

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works the approximate total tonnage of iron railings collected for conversion to war material since the inception of the scheme; and whether it is the intention of the Government to endeavour to increase still further this tonnage by improved methods and organisation?

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works (Mr. Hicks)

Over 500,000 tons of iron and steel railings have been collected since the commencement of the campaign in September, 1941. The quantity, which remains to be recovered, is estimated to be comparatively small, and I am not persuaded that any change in the organisation or in the methods employed is called for.

Mr. De la Sére

Can the hon. Gentleman assure me that the scrap which is lying about in many parts of the country is receiving his attention?

Mr. Hicks

Yes, Sir, I can assure the hon. Member that it is receiving my attention.

Mr. De Ia Bére

But will the hon. Gentleman get on with the job of collecting it? The matter may be receiving his attention, but I want something done.

Mr. Maxtot

Can my hon. Friend say whether any of this railings scrap has been used in steel production?

Mr. Hicks

Yes, Sir, about 400,000 tons have already been smelted in furnaces and used in munitions manufacture. Just over 100,000 tons are still available. The I[...]on and Steel Control have about 80,000 tons under their control, and the residue is in merchants' yards, where it has to be treated by cutting to suitable sizes for feeding into the furnaces.