I am informed that the National Coal Board have suggested a number of outlets for the coals produced by these small mines, and most of them are disposing of their output currently and reducing their stocks.
I understand that the North Staffordshire Federation of Small Mines consider that there has been a great improvement in the position.
While thanking the Minister for the action he took last week in this matter, may I ask if he is aware that these small mine owners cannot afford to carry large stocks of coal and have been badly hit by the Lancashire slump and the recession in the salt trade? So far as I am informed there are still many complaints of over-stocking, which is impeding the flow of production. Will he keep an eye on this matter?
Yes, Sir, that was one of the reasons for the action that was taken. I shall certainly keep an eye on the matter, but the remedial measures have only recently been put into operation.