Mr. De la Bère
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in connection with the small retail trader who has been compelled to go out of business as a result of the war, steps will be taken to secure his premises as soon as he has to close; and whether provision will be made of a money capital grant to enable him to start again at the cessation of hostilities?
§ Mr. Dalton
I am submitting my hon. Friend's suggestion to the Retail Trade Committee who are at present discussing with retail trade associations the best ways in which all classes of traders can meet their war-time difficulties. I am unable to say whether any such financial assistance as is proposed in the second part of the Question would prove a practical measure at the cessation of hostilities, but it has already been stated in this House that it would be contrary to the policy of His Majesty's Government to grant compensation from public funds except where loss is due to direct enemy action.