HC Deb 01 July 1959 vol 608 cc441-2
13. Mr. Patrick Maitland

asked the Minister of Labour what arrangements he has with the nationalised industries to enable him to anticipate redundancies in their employment, for example, in the collieries; and when he expects the next phase of redundancies through closure at Douglas Castle Colliery in the County of Lanark.

Mr. Iain Macleod

Arrangements for informal consultation are made as required, with the co-operation of my right hon. Friends the Minister of Power and the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation. I understand that the next and final stage of closure at Douglas Castle Colliery is timed for September next.

Mr. Maitland

Does my right hon. Friend know, and can he tell us, how many remaining workers at Douglas will be affected? Will he keep this matter constantly before his hon. and right hon. colleagues, so that something can be done to arrest the complete decline and ruination of this large area?

Mr. Macleod

On the question of numbers, 115 men are affected in total, but I do not know how many of them may yet be transferred to other employment. I will certainly keep in touch with my right hon. Friends on this matter.

Mr. Robens

These closures very often mean, as in the case of the hon. Member's constituency, the dereliction of a complete village. Will the right hon. Gentleman consult the President of the Board of Trade about alternative industries for many of the areas which, under the new National Coal Board plan, are likely to become derelict?

Mr. Macleod

I am glad that the right hon. Gentleman has emphasised that aspect of the matter, because the social effect of closures must be studied along with the economic effects.

Mr. Maitland

Will the right hon. Gentleman help me to get new industries established in Douglas?

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