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Howden Flax Mill (Sale of Equipment)

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 9th May 1957.

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Photo of Mr George Jeger Mr George Jeger , Goole 12:00 am, 9th May 1957

asked the President of the Board of Trade how much was realised by the sale of the equipment at the Howden Flax Mill on 3rd May; what was its original cost; and what was its book value at the time of the sale.

Photo of Mr David Eccles Mr David Eccles , Chippenham

The sale took place by public auction on 2nd May. The preliminary estimate of the gross sum realised is £3,350. The original cost of the equipment included in the auction sale was £62,906 and the written-down value at the date of the sale was £16,689. Much of the plant and machinery had little more than scrap value since it was obsolete and of no use to any other industry.

Photo of Mr George Jeger Mr George Jeger , Goole

Is not the President surprised at the great loss which has been incurred? Would it not have been a much better idea to have kept the factory going, since it is making flax and goods of strategic value?

Photo of Mr David Eccles Mr David Eccles , Chippenham

It is now two years since any flax has been grown under the flax scheme. There is, therefore, no flax to manufacture.