asked the Secretary for Mines whether any steps have been taken to meet the complaint that colliery companies are working the uncommercial seams of coal, not normally in production, to the detriment of output, having regard to the labour, involved and the inferior quality of coal produced, leaving the more profitable seams for exploitation after the war?
This is one of the many aspects of the coal production problem which are engaging the close attention of my technical advisers. So far, there is no evidence of any serious cause for complaint in this direction; but general investigations are still proceeding.
In view of the fact that this matter has been raised time and again in this House, has the Department taken any steps to investigate the veracity or otherwise of the complaints?
If my hon. Friend seeks to draw a distinction between the terms, may I ask whether he has made any investigation to see whether there is any justification for the complaints?
Certainly. We have technical advisers to make a survey of the productive capacity of every pit throughout the United Kingdom, and we shall soon have full information on the subject.