HC Deb 06 December 1965 vol 722 cc17-8
35. Captain W. Elliot

asked the Minister of Labour how many staff are employed by Her Majesty's Inspector of Factories at the present time; how this compares with each of the five previous years; and how many vacancies there are to make up establishment.

Mr. Thornton

On 1st December, 1965 there were 482 H.M. Inspectors of Factories in post against an authorised cadre of 517 posts.

The corresponding figures for the five previous years are:—in 1960, 415 against a cadre of 448: 1961, 424 against 449: 1962, 445 against 479: 1963, 464 against 512: and 1964, 474 against 517.

Captain Elliot

Is the Minister satisfied with those figures? Can he tell the House if there is difficulty in increasing the numbers to get them up to establishment?

Mr. Thornton

We are doing all we can without reducing the standards—which I am sure the hon. and gallant Member would not like to see take place—to bring the number in post up to the authorised establishment. This we should pursue. The reason we have not reached the cadre, as he probably knows, is that on several occasions in the last several years the cadre has been increased to meet the rising responsibilities of the Inspectorate.