HC Deb 05 March 1946 vol 420 cc156-7
10. Mr. William Shepherd

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power why the Man-cheater area is short of coal; and why collieries in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Yorkshire and Staffordshire are being directed to send the coal to the South and for export when the Manchester district is short.

The Minister of Fuel and Power (Mr. Shinwell)

There is a general shortage of coal supplies but I am satisfied that Manchester is receiving its fair share of the supplies available. The diversion of certain supplies to the South has been necessary in order to relieve the acute position in the Southern areas where the quantities available to consumers have been considerably less than in the North. With regard to the export of coal I would refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave on 12th February to my hon. Friend the Member for Oldham (Mr. Fairhurst).

Mr. Shepherd

In view of the fact that Manchester is very often wet and cold, can the Minister, say whether this state of affairs in Manchester is to be remedied?

Mr. Shinwell

Manchester has a better allocation of supplies than the South.

Major Peter Roberts

With regard to the second part of the reply, is the Minister aware that in Sheffield it is impossible to get even 8 cwt. of coal in the fuel period—certainly nothing like 10 cwt. — and what is he going to do about it?

Mr. Jennings

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that if the citizens of Sheffield are having their fair allocation, that means having none at all?

Mr. Shinwell

Of course, the hon Member knows that that is quite inaccurate. He speaks of Sheffield generally, but if he knows consumers who are receiving nothing at all will he either refer them to the local fuel overseer or give me details of specific cases?

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