Unemployment Survey, North-West Wales

Oral Answers to Questions — Palace of Westminster – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th March 1955.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Cledwyn Hughes Mr Cledwyn Hughes , Anglesey 12:00 am, 29th March 1955

asked the President of the Board of Trade if the survey by his Department of the unemployment problems of North-West Wales has yet been completed: and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Mr Henry Strauss Mr Henry Strauss , Norwich South

Yes, Sir. Since the answer is long, I will, with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Photo of Mr Cledwyn Hughes Mr Cledwyn Hughes , Anglesey

While thanking the Minister for instituting this inquiry into what is a very grave and important problem, may I ask him whether he can now say if it is proposed to schedule these counties as a Development Area or to give them some comparable status?

Photo of Mr Henry Strauss Mr Henry Strauss , Norwich South

It is not proposed to make a Development Area, but, for the rest, I would ask the hon. Gentleman to be good enough to study the answer.

Photo of Mr James Griffiths Mr James Griffiths , Llanelli

If it is not proposed to schedule this area as a Development Area, may I ask the Minister, in view of the continuing decline of its major industry, the slate industry, what other steps and under what other provision and Statute do the Government propose to deal with this situation.

Photo of Mr Henry Strauss Mr Henry Strauss , Norwich South

That is dealt with in the answer.

Following is the answer:

The Surveys by the Ministry of Labour and the Board of Trade have been completed. The Government recognise that there is a special problem of unemployment in parts of the area surveyed and accept that some further industrial development is needed; but my right hon. Friend is not satisfied that scheduling under the Distribution of Industry Act would be appropriate as a means of dealing with the problem.

We shall try to steer suitable industry to the area, and my right hon. Friend understands that the Development Commission will be prepared to consider recommending further assistance on a limited scale in the building of factories in suitable cases. A small factory has just been built at Llangefni with the help of the Development Fund, and the Commission has at present under consideration a proposal for a factory of some 30.000 sq. ft. there.