HC Deb 19 April 1923 vol 162 cc2285-6W

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether he is aware that unsigned copies of an arrangement between the Treasury and the Corps of Commissionaires were given to the commissionaires employed on warding duties at the British Museum in January, 1921; that this arrangement was intended to take the place of the Treasury's offer made through the Departmental Council on the 6th October, 1920, which induced the men to withdraw their cases from the Civil Service Arbitration Board; that none of the men know anything of any arrangement between the Corps of Commissionaires and the Trustees of the British Museum; and whether, in view of the fact that the Corps of Commissionaires have not power to enter into arrangements without the consent of the men concerned, which consent has never been asked for nor given, he will reconsider this matter and have the position of these men properly graded in order that not only the Treasury and the Trustees of the Museum, but the men themselves, may know their exact position?


The answers to the five parts of the question are as follows:

  1. 1. The document referred to was not an arrangement between the, Treasury and the Corps of Commissionaires, but a statement of the arrangement arrived at by the Trustees with the Treasury and the Corps of Commissionaires in connection with the reorganisation scheme for the British Museum.
  2. 2. The application of the men to the Arbitration Board was in no way prejudiced by the fact that they took time to consider the advantages given by this arrangement before proceeding with their case before the Board.
  3. 3. The representative of the men was fully informed as to the arrangement between the Trustees and the Corps.
  4. 4. I have, no knowledge as to the powers of the Corps to enter into arrangements without the consent of the men concerned.
  5. 5. In my opinion and that of the Trustees, the men are properly graded, and there is no occasion for doubt as to their exact position.

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