§ 16. Mr. Snadden
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that 50 per cent. of the employees of the Alloa Glassworks Co., Ltd., have had to be paid off because of a shortage of soda ash; and what steps he is taking to remedy the position.
§ Mr. H. Wilson
This firm is reducing its staff on the transfer of part of its production to a new extension which will be more economical in labour. The firm is receiving its normal allocation of soda ash, but the shortage of this material has made it impossible for me to allocate enough to enable the firm to operate simultaneously both its old and new plant. Some weeks ago an additional amount of soda ash became available, but the firm's minimum stated requirements were too high to justify the additional allocation. It was only after my Department had finally allocated this extra amount that the firm stated that a reduced allocation would be of value. Since the hon. Member put down his Question, a further small amount of soda ash has become available for allocation, and I shall be able to give the firm some assistance though not, I fear, enough to enable them to retain all their labour force hitherto employed.