HC Deb 12 February 1953 vol 511 cc596-7
57. Mr. Slater

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer his intentions with regard to extending the time allowed for applications for Coronation crown pieces.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

As I told the House on 27th January, orders in respect of 2,750,000 crown pieces had been placed by 31st December. My right hon. Friend has now authorised the Royal Mint to strike up to four million crown pieces in all. Additional orders within this overall limit will be accepted through the banks, with whom they should be placed as soon as possible. Every effort will be made to supply the 2,750,000 already ordered before the Coronation, but, although the Royal Mint will do its best, I cannot guarantee this for later orders.

Mr. Slater

Does that mean that at the moment the Chancellor is extending the time limit, but is not giving us the date to which it has been extended? Is the hon. Gentleman aware that in my own constituency, by voluntary effort, 72 children were to be catered for in one street alone? People are protesting that because of the inadequacy of the time limit relating to applications they were not given an opportunity to place their orders.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

I think the hon. Gentleman will be reassured when he studies the terms of my answer. I can summarise the information he has asked for. The position is that applications may now be made for the balance of 1,250,000 over the 2,750,000 already ordered. Those applications should be made as soon as possible because there must be a limit to the total and, other things being equal, first come first served.

Mr. Mitchison

Of what metal will these coins consist, silver or cupro-nickel, or what?

Mr. Gaitskell

While welcoming the Financial Secretary's statement, may I ask him how much profit the Treasury will make out of this issue?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman will be good enough to put down a question on that point.