HC Deb 04 June 1951 vol 488 c673
16. Mr. John Rodgers

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power if he has taken steps to see that the allocation of summer coal to coal merchants is taking place to meet summer stocking demands.

Mr. P. Noel-Baker

I would refer the hon. Member to the answers which I gave to the hon. and gallant Members for Chelsea (Commander Noble) and Finchley (Captain Crowder) on 7th May.

Mr. Rodgers

Does not the right hon. Gentleman think that he is grossly misleading the public in urging them to stock up with summer coal when coal merchants have not enough stocks to supply their normal allocations?

Mr. Noel-Baker

I think the hon. Gentleman is misinformed. The summer prices scheme began on 1st June, and the merchants are getting supplies which will enable them to give coal to consumers for stocking.

Mr. Rodgers

Is the Minister not aware that merchants in Sevenoaks are not receiving sufficient coal to supply then-normal orders, let alone orders for stocking?

Mr. Noel-Baker

If the hon. Gentleman will let me have details, I will look into it. I inquired some little while ago, and found that things were much better.

Mr. Remnant

Will the Minister make further inquiries, because in areas round Reading, coal merchants have neither coal nor coke to supply to customers?