HC Deb 17 June 1968 vol 766 cc694-5
24. Miss Harvie Anderson

asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what further representations he has received from the construction and civil engineering industries about the workings of British Standard Time; and what reply he has sent.

Mr. Mellish

I have nothing to add to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Totnes (Mr. Mawby) on 11th March. —[Vol. 760, c. 197.]

Miss Anderson:

No doubt the Minister Minister is aware that there is a vast difference in this problem between Totnes and Stornoway, for example. Will he recognise the serious complication that arises in Scotland, where, for nearly three months in the year, the sun rises at 9.30 a.m. and probably there is a bad weather hazard? This constitutes a most serious problem. Will the right hon. Gentleman join those who seriously criticise British Standard Time?

Mr. Mellish

I understand that this was discussed with our friends in Scotland and that there was a balance of opinion in favour of permanent Summer Time among the 80 or so representative organisations, including the Scottish T.U.C., which the Government consulted. I have the list before me, but I shall not bore the House by trying to read out the names of the organisations it contains. I will send the hon. Lady the full list if she likes, together with the organisations' views. It is like everything else in this country. If one wants to make a change and do anything differently, there is one heck of a row.

Mr. Costain

Has the industry told the Minister of its concern about the question of safety on building sites due to frost on scaffolding and so on in the early hours of the morning?

Mr. Mellish

I do not know whether the change to British Standard Time has anything to do with that. Many building sites have been dangerous for many years, and I spend a lot of time trying to improve building site amenities and the adoption of winter building techniques whether we have Summer Time or not.