§ 116. Mr. Osborne
asked the Minister of Supply what quantity of clothes and household linen has been sold from Government stores coupon or docket free; why they had to be offered free of coupons or dockets; and how much profit or loss has been made on them.
§ Mr. Woodburn
The following quantities of Government surplus clothes and household linen have been sold coupon or docket free:
Garments Outerwear new 350,000 Outerwear used 1,600,000 Underwear new 2,400,000 Underwear used 13,000 Overalls new 300,000 Overalls used 300,000 Pairs Socks and stockings new 2,508,500 Socks and stockings used 30,000 Garments Protective clothing and flying suits new 205,000 used 3,500,000 Towels 450,000 Sheets 476,000 (mainly soiled or used) Blankets 5,807,750 (coloured or mainly used)
As my right hon. and learned Friend the President of the Board of Trade explained on 30th July last, in answer to a Question by the hon. Member for Melton (Mr. Nutting), surplus clothing of Service types would not sell readily at reasonable prices if coupons had to be surrendered and it was therefore decided, after consultation with the trade, to sell it coupon free. The prices charged by the Department are on the basis of ensuring a fair and reasonable price to the user in relation to the prices of comparable articles on sale in the home market, and are not primarily based on considerations of profit or loss.