§ Mr. K. Thompson
asked the Minister of Labour to what extent short-time working has increased in the Lancashire cotton mills in recent months.
§ Mr. Watkinson
There was a temporary increase in short-time working after Christmas when about 120 mills extended their normal holiday by periods of one to 14 days, some 20,000 operatives being affected. The majority of these mills have since returned to full time working. According to statistics collected from employers, there was little change in short-time working in the cotton industry in the North-Western Region between August and November, some 2,000 operatives representing 1 per cent. of the total employed being affected in each of these months.