HC Deb 31 May 1954 vol 528 cc882-3
23. Mr. Sorensen

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power if he will take steps to ensure that old-age pensioners shall only be charged for purchasing small quantities of coal exactly proportionate to the price per ton; and whether means will be considered by which they shall only be charged summer prices for coal ordered now, but to be delivered and paid for over four periods during autumn and winter.

Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd

I am afraid these methods of helping old-age pensioners would be impracticable.

Mr. Sorensen

Could the Minister say why? Surely this is the one means by which the heavy burden on the old-age pensioners could be a little eased as, by having to pay a proportionately large amount for small quantities of coal, they are paying for their own poverty?

Mr. Lloyd

The nationalisation statutes preclude the National Coal Board from making any differentiation.