§ Mr. Frank Cook (Stockton, North)
I seek leave to present a petition on behalf of some of my constituents, namely, A. Dudman of Priory gardens, Norton, C. Davies of Northpark, Billingham, B. Naughton of Hillside road, Norton and others.
It is a parallel, formalised edition of a less orderly petition which was presented at 12.30 pm yesterday to No. 10 Downing street for the attention of the Prime Minister. It refers to proposals to relocate 180 key jobs, covering core management and control procedures at the royal naval stores depot at Eaglescliffe in Stockton-on-Tees. Those proposals make no sense, in terms of efficiency, efficacy, organisation or economics. The proposals run directly counter to commitments said to have been given by the Prime Minister in promising departmental jobs to the north-east. It would seem that the trawl that he promised has succeeded in doing no more than bringing a cake factory and the suggestion that those 180 jobs should be removed to the south-west, to Bath.
In the north-east we have the proper equipment and qualified staff to cover the jobs. However one views the proposals it makes no sense to move the jobs, the staff or the equipment to the south-west.
Wherefore your Petitioners pray that your honourable House urge the Secretary of State for Defence to abandon the proposal to transfer the 180 jobs from Eaglescliffe.
§ And your Petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray, &c.
§ To lie upon the Table.12.45 am
§ Ms. Marjorie Mowlam (Redcar)
I, too, should like to present a petition on behalf of a number of my constituents about the loss of 180 jobs as a result of job movements from Eaglescliffe to the south. As my hon. Friend the Member for Stockton, North (Mr. Cook) said, that decision is contrary to current Government policy, which states that they are interested in bringing jobs to the north-east—the exact opposite is happening. On behalf of my petitioners I pray that 1113 your honourable House urge the Secretary of State for Defence to abandon the proposal to transfer the 180 jobs from Eaglescliffe.
§ To lie upon the Table.12.45 am
§ Mr. Stuart Bell (Middlesbrough)
I rise on behalf my constituent and petitioner, Michael Bateman of 7 Ustead road, Middlesbrough, who also makes a humble petition on behalf of the work force of the Royal Naval stores depot at Eaglescliffe.
The petition opposes the closure of those particular works and the proposition of Her Majesty's Government to create a centralised naval support command in Bath. That would necessitate the loss of 180 jobs in the royal naval stores depot at Eaglescliffe near Stockton-on-Tees in the county of Cleveland.
I have presented the petition to draw attention to the fact that we are in a recession that is deep and deepening, which is causing great dismay to the people of Cleveland. Their great fear is that the loss of those 180 jobs will add to that dismay.
§ To lie upon the Table.12.46 am
§ Mr. Alan Milburn (Darlington)
In common with my hon. Friends the Members for Redcar (Ms. Mowlam), for Stockton, North (Mr. Cook) and for Middlesbrough (Mr. Bell), I too present a petition on behalf of my constituents who work at the Eaglescliffe royal navy stores depot.
As my hon. Friends have said, 180 jobs are under threat as a result of the decision to transfer those jobs from Eaglescliffe to Bath. That decision reverses the normal mechanism of regional policy which moves jobs from the south to the north.
Five of my constituents have signed the petition, Brian Hildon, Ruth Cooke, Barry Clarke, Jean Davies and Christine Kane. Yesterday. a petition with 6,000 names was presented to 10 Downing street. The decision has excited a great deal of concern in my constituency and in the general area. It is a matter of great import. I beg to present that petition.
§ To lie upon the Table.