§ 12. Mr. Iremonger
asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what further steps he has taken to estimate the effect on productivity in the civil engineering industry of British Standard Time; and whether he will make a statement.
§ 29. Mr. Costain
asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what recent action he has taken to publish evidence on the effects on the building industry of British Standard Time in the winter months.
31. Mr. Geoffrey Wilson
asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what survey he has made of the effects on safety and productivity of building contractors of British Standard Time in midwinter; and whether he will make a statement.
§ Mr. John Silkin
As my predecessor stated on 22nd April the results of the N.F.B.T.E. survey were passed to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Home Department on 26th March, who stated that it was a cogent, well-substantiated and objective report which would carry full weight in the present assessment. No similar representations have been received from the Federation of Civil Engineering Contractors on this subject. Further studies would not be helpful until the results of his interim assessment are known.—[Vol. 782, c. 240–2].
§ Mr. Iremonger
Is not the Minister aware that it is impossible artificially to light many of these building sites? Why should builders on these sites be handicapped by having to start late?
§ Mr. Silkin
I am well aware that the N.F.B.T.E. has given examples which it believes affect the whole of this issue. I am also confident that my right hon. 1213 Friend the Home Secretary will take all these factors into consideration.
§ Mr. Costain
The Minister said that the civil engineers had not made any representations. Would it help him in his representations to the Home Secretary if they did so? He can take it from me that they find this problem very difficult.
§ Mr. Silkin
As I said a moment ago, my right hon. Friend has received the results of the N.F.B.T.E. survey
§ Mr. Heffer
Will my right hon. Friend again draw the Home Secretary's attention to this report and to the fact that many hon. Members with deep understanding of the building industry warned when the legislation was introduced that for the building industry it would be an utter failure?
§ Mr. Silkin
This and other considerations and matters of balance will all be taken into account by my right hon. Friend. I do not think that he needs me to add to them.