National Coal Board (Magazine)

Oral Answers to Questions — National Finance – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 20th January 1948.

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Photo of Sir John Mellor Sir John Mellor , Sutton Coldfield 12:00 am, 20th January 1948

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether a profit or loss arose from the preparation and publication by the Central Office of Information and His Majesty's Stationery Office of the first six issues of the National Coal Board's magazine entitled "Coal"; how such profit or loss will be accounted; and why these six issues purported to be produced for the National Coal Board, which accepted no financial responsibility.

Photo of Sir Stafford Cripps Sir Stafford Cripps , Bristol East

A loss of £4,630 arose from the preparation and publication of the first six issues of the magazine "Coal." With the exception of certain costs of the Central Office of Information, the expenditure will be charged against the Vote of His Majesty's Stationery Office and all the receipts will accrue to that Vote. The magazine has been produced throughout for the National Coal Board in the sense that the Coal Board has been responsible for the editorial policy. Financial responsibility for this and certain other mining publicity was taken over by the Coal Board from the Ministry of Fuel and Power on 1st October, 1947.

Photo of Sir John Mellor Sir John Mellor , Sutton Coldfield

Before 1st October, why should this concealed subsidy have been paid to the National Coal Board at the expense of the taxpayer?

Photo of Sir Stafford Cripps Sir Stafford Cripps , Bristol East

It was thought valuable for the purpose of trying to get more coal produced.

Photo of Sir John Mellor Sir John Mellor , Sutton Coldfield

Have we not always been given to understand that the National Coal Board is a separate financial entity?