§ Sir Knox Cunningham
May I add my personal good wishes to the Secretary of State on his appointment?
§ Mr. Gibson-Watt
In this serious and important matter, which concerns both sides of the House, will the right hon. Gentleman make it clear where the ultimate responsibility for pit closures lies? Will he, above all, make certain that wherever possible his right hon. Friend the Prime Minister is not brought 1265 into this, because on so many occasions what he has said has been misinterpreted?
§ Mr. Thomas
When my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister is brought in, it is always to good effect. The colliery closure programme is the National Coal Board's. I am in close touch with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Power about closures generally and with my other colleagues about the action which needs to be taken to deal with the results of closures in particular areas.