§ 44. Mr. Murray
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power whether he will make a statement as to the likelihood of the Prime Minister's request for an extra 3,000,000 tons of coal being realised in the near future.
§ Mr. P. Noel-Baker
From 1st January to 10th March, there have been, on the average, 11,100 fewer miners on the colliery books than there were during the same period of 1950. But the output of coal from the pits has been 1,460,000 tons greater than it was then. During the last four weeks, the average increase over last year has been a quarter of a million tons per week. If this rate of increase could be maintained until the end of April, the target of three million tons would be reached. In any case, it is already clear that everyone in the coal industry, the national and divisions board, the managers, the deputies and overmen, and the miners have made a magnificent effort to meet the nation's needs.
§ Mr. Murray
Is my right hon. Friend aware that the statement he has made will give great satisfaction to the miners? When we register the three million tons, will the Prime Minister or my right hon. Friend himself consider sending a special letter of thanks to the miners?