§ 3.10 p.m.
§ LORD STRANGEMy Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.
§ [The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are aware that Her Majesty's loyal subjects in the Isle of Man have been nearly ruined by the strike of the merchant seamen.]
§ THE JOINT PARLIAMENTARY UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE, HOME OFFICE (LORD STONHAM)My Lords, Her Majesty's Government and the Government of the Isle of Man have kept in close touch about difficulties arising in the island out of the seamen's strike. Essential supplies and services have been maintained. Inevitably and regrettably, however, the strike has had a serious effect on the economy of the island, which depends to a large extent on the tourist industry.
§ LORD STRANGEMy Lords, I should like to thank the noble Lord for his Answer. I do not intend to worry him with further questions, because I shall be speaking on this subject in full later on.
§ VISCOUNT MASSEREENE AND FERRARDMy Lords, is the noble Lord aware that the Isle of Man is not the only island which has suffered severely because of the strike? The Isle of Mull has also suffered severely. I understand that already £300,000 has been lost to the Isle of Mull from the tourist trade. May I further ask that Her Majesty's Government bring this fact to the attention of the Highlands Development Board, and that in their future dealings with the Isle of Mull they will bear this in mind and will be very liberal?
§ LORD STONHAMMy Lords, I am aware that losses of this kind have, unfortunately, been sustained in many of the outlying parts of the United Kingdom. But the Question which was addressed to me related to the Isle of Man, and that is the Question I have answered.