Orders of the Day — Coal Situation.

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 17th March 1942.

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Photo of Mr William Stewart Mr William Stewart , Houghton-le-Spring

As my hon. Friend says, good timber. My experience has taught me that if you are working in a place which is dangerous, you always get warning from your good timber by the cracking owing to the gradual pressure, whereas where steel struts are used, you do not get that degree of warning which you would otherwise get. I would like to say, in conclusion, that this House has debated the question of mining a number of times, and, as I said at the beginning of my remarks, the question of the miner, his hours, his conditions of labour and his wages, gets scant courtesy in various directions when everything is going smoothly, but when we are faced with a national crisis and the commodity which the miner produces is of vital importance to us as a nation, then to an appreciable extent the miner comes into his own. I repeat that, hoping that on future occasions we remember that although the miner may go down into the bowels of the earth and fight against the dangers that mother earth can bring against him, he is really a valuable asset to this country and ought not to be neglected when questions touching his welfare are introduced in this House of Commons.