§ Sir R. GOWER
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if he can state the number of men employed in Chatham, Portsmouth and Devonport dockyards, respectively, on 31st March, 1933; the number of men discharged or invalided since that date; and the number employed in these yards at the latest available date?
Sir B. EYRES MONSELL
The numbers of workpeople employed in all departments in the three dockyards named on the 31st March, 1933, and the 7th April, 1934 (the latest date for which figures are available) were :—
— Portsmouth. Devonport. Chatham. 31st March, 1933 12,931 10,668 8,098 7th April, 1934 12,967 11,121 8,769
The approximate numbers of men discharged from each of these three dockyards during the same period, including invaliding but excluding death, superannuation and discharge at own request or following absence without leave, were :—
Portsmouth 1,862 Devonport 2,272 Chatham 1,353
It will be understood that discharges and re-entries are constantly taking place on account of fluctuations in the amount and nature of the work in the yards and that the same individual may be discharged and re-entered several times a year.
The approximate numbers of entries, covering the same period, who would for the most part be re-entries, were :—
Portsmouth 2,335 Devonport 3,075 Chatham 2,268
§ Mr. R. BEAUMONT
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether his attention has been called to the fact that nine men in Portsmouth Dockyard have recently been de-graded from welders to burners and had their pay reduced from 47s. per week to 39s. per week, and two men who had been receiving 44s. per week as burners and who had recently been raised to the rate of 47s. per week after qualifying as welders have had their pay similarly reduced to 39s. per week; and whether he can state what steps were taken to discuss this change with any associations representing Admiralty industrial employés before it was made?
Sir B. EYRES MONSELL
The men concerned were all previously employed as welders. Owing to a falling off in acetylene welding work they were offered and accepted acetylene burning work at the appropriate wages. The procedure followed was in accordance with the dockyard regulations and there was no occasion for consulting any association of Admiralty employés beforehand.