Clyde Shipyard Workers (Travelling Expenses)

Oral Answers to Questions — National Finance – in the House of Commons on 8th October 1942.

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Photo of Mr David Kirkwood Mr David Kirkwood , Dumbarton District of Burghs

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware of the additional travelling expenses borne by shipyard workers on the Clyde owing to the lack of housing facilities in their neighbourhood, which increase the risk of inflation and add to the cost of shipbuilding; and whether he will mitigate the dis- satisfaction of these workers at having to incur this expense by allowing them to deduct the whole of it from their income for the purpose of tax assessment?

Photo of Sir Kingsley Wood Sir Kingsley Wood , Woolwich West

As regards the first part of the Question, I would refer my hon. Friend to the answer given him by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland on Tuesday last. I would remind my hon. Friend that provision was made in 1941 for an Income Tax deduction in respect of the additional travelling expenses, up to £5 for a half-year, incurred by a manual worker whose place of work or residence has changed because of the war. As I explained to the House at that time I was obliged to put some limit to the concession having regard to the financial situation, and in present circumstances I am afraid I can hold out no hope of extending or increasing the allowable deductions for travelling expenses.

Photo of Mr David Kirkwood Mr David Kirkwood , Dumbarton District of Burghs

Is the Chancellor aware that the statement he has just made has proved my contention up to the hilt, that these constituents of mine in Clydebank have now to pay 15s. a week extra for travelling expenses because they were blasted out of Clydebank and that no allowance is to be made, and they are to be penalised?