HC Deb 04 June 1951 vol 488 c671
14. Mr. John Rodgers

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power why it now takes from three to four weeks for delivery of coal after receipt of invoice whereas the average time was four to five days previous to nationalisation.

Mr. P. Noel-Baker

If the hon. Member is aware of any case where there has been undue delay of coal in transit after the despatch note has been received, he should advise the merchant to furnish full details to the supplier, who should then make representations to the appropriate transport organisation or contractor.

Mr. Rodgers

In this case the merchants have already been in touch with the local fuel overseer and have had no satisfaction whatsoever. Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us what machinery exists for liaison between the Coal Board and the Railway Executive?

Mr. Noel-Baker

They ought to take it up, if necessary, with their Consumers' Council.

Mr. P. Roberts

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there will be a problem over the shortage of wagons, and that that will be one of the reasons for delayed deliveries? Will he see that British Railways provide the necessary coal wagons?

Mr. Noel-Baker

I think that question ought to be put down to the Minister of Transport.

Mr. Roberts

If there is no coal it will certainly be the Minister's responsibility.

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