HC Deb 16 July 1976 vol 915 cc313-4W
Mr. Madden

asked the Secretary of State for Industry if he will list in detail (a) the consideration given to the proposals for a workers' co-operative to be established at Brentford Nylons, (b) the proposals made, (c) when such proposals were considered by IDAB, and (d) what were their recommendations.

Mr. Alan Williams

The workers' representatives did not present fully developed proposals for a co-operative. But it was plain that a very substantially greater Government financial contribution would be required, and the co-operative would not have the same resources to restore and develop the business. I have nothing further to add to the information I have already given the House about the advice of the Industrial Development Advisory Board.

Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the Secretary of State for Industry whether he will make a statement on his decision to make a grant to the Lonrho organisation to save the Brentford Nylons firm; and to what extent other organisations were considered for grants to take this firm over before approaching the Lonrho organisation.

Mr. Alan Williams

A number of enquiries were made of the Department, but Lonrho was the only company to come forward with firm proposals. In recommending that assistance should be made available by way of a loan the IDAB took account of all factors. The workers and their representatives were fully consulted about the Lonrho proposals, and have stated their support for them. In the absence of any meaningful alternative proposal I regarded it as of major importance to save the jobs of the 1,800 workers in the special development areas.

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