HC Deb 23 July 1973 vol 860 cc1142-3
16. Mr. Ellis

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what remit he has given to the task force in respect of employment prospects in the Wrexham constituency.

Mr. Peter Thomas

I am asking the members of the Shotton Task Force to produce a separate report on the situation in the Wrexham area, taking into account the effects of the proposed rundown in employment at Shotton and the proposed closure of Gresford Colliery.

Mr. Ellis

Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman draw to the attention of the task force the necessity to see whether it can succeed where apparently everything else has failed and the fact that it is the overwhelming opinion among industrialists, trade unionists, and local authorities in Wrexham that a connection between the Wrexham area and the motorway link is of the utmost necessity and that, in particular, improvements to the A534 Wrexham-Nantwich road should be accorded the utmost priority?

Mr. Thomas

Yes, I agree with the hon. Gentleman. Communications would obviously be a matter which would be very closely considered.

Mr. Cledwyn Hughes

What work is the task force doing in relation to the rest of North Wales? If it is to pay attention to the problems of Wrexham, surely it should have a little time to pay attention to the problems of North-West Wales, where unemployment is far higher than it is anywhere else in North Wales.

Mr. Thomas

With respect to the right hon. Gentleman there is a difference, because the task force has already considered the Wrexham situation in the light of the proposed rundown at Shot-ton, because one in eight of the Shotton labour force live in the Wrexham area and it was in the light of the proposed closure of Gresford Colliery that I thought that it would be right to have a separate report on Wrexham so as not to hold up the final Shotton report, which is nearly ready.