Oral Answers to Questions — Coal Industry (Accident, Newdigate Colliery).

– in the House of Commons at on 8 September 1931.

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Photo of Mr Francis Smith Mr Francis Smith , Nuneaton

(by Private Notice), asked the Secretary for Mines whether his Department has been advised of the explosion which occurred at the Newdigate Colliery on Thursday last, 3rd September, as a result of which six miners have lost their lives and a number of others injured. Whether his attention has been called to the inquest held on Saturday last; and the urgent request by Mr. William Johnson, the miners' representative, that a public inquiry should be held in order to ascertain the causes; and if he can say whether the inquiry as asked for will he held, and the probable date?

Photo of Mr Isaac Foot Mr Isaac Foot , Bodmin

I have received a preliminary report on this unfortunate accident, and have decided to order a formal investigation under Section 83 of the Coal Mines Act, 1911. The date and place of the investigation, which will be held in public, will be announced as soon as possible. I take this opportunity of expressing my deep regret at this sad disaster. I am sure that all Members of this House will join with me in sympathising with the relatives of the seven men who have lost their lives, and in hoping for a speedy recovery of those who were injured.

Photo of Mr William Lawther Mr William Lawther , Barnard Castle

Having regard to the fact that the late Secretary for Mines was conducting investigations in relation to safety in mines, is there to be any economy in this direction?

Photo of Mr Isaac Foot Mr Isaac Foot , Bodmin

That question does not arise out of the answer, but my hon. Friend may be assured that there will always be in this House, on the part of all Members, a desire to obtain the fullest security for those who work in the mines.