HC Deb 26 July 1951 vol 491 cc620-1
8. Mr. Wood

asked the President of the Board of Trade for what purposes his regulations permit the stamping of crockery with distinctive initials.

Sir H. Shawcross

The stamping of crockery with distinctive initials is not generally permitted, but licences issued under the Domestic and Ornamental Pottery (Manufacture, Marking and Supply) Order, 1950, permit it for crockery for the services run by British Railways and for canteens run by the Port of London Authority, since the pilferage risks are so great in these cases that it is doubtful whether the canteen services could be carried on if marking were not permitted.

I am considering allowing certain hotels which cater largely for overseas tourists to have some crockery distinctively marked with a name or badge, but I should emphasise that any general relaxation of this prohibition would not be possible without reducing total production and exports.

Mr. Wood

Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman consider extending the relaxation of this control a little further, because there are plenty of opportunities to pilfer from the kind of institute which I mentioned in my Question about a fortnight ago—the Church Institute—and there appears to be rather unfair discrimination between a large body and a small one?

Sir H. Shawcross

I am very anxious to reduce these exemptions to an absolute minimum and not to create, in favour of one organisation or class of organisations, a precedent which might allow others to come in. Any exemption of this kind has an effect on the production of an industry on whose manufactures we shall rely increasingly largely in our export trade.

Sir H. Williams

If the right hon. and learned Gentleman goes to Stoke-on-Trent and buys some crockery, is there any reason why he should not have "H.S." put on it?

Sir H. Shawcross

Every reason, if it interferes in the slightest degree with our export drive.

Mr. Henry Strauss

Is the right hon. and learned Gentleman confident that distinctive markings will not add to the value of the things as souvenirs?

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