Results 61–80 of 981 for speaker:Sir Eric Geddes

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: They asked to amalgamate, and they could do that after this Bill. That is what they wanted in 1908 to conserve their vanishing dividends—the North British Railway. Now it is said to be the worst thing possible. Mr. Jackson was their general manager. I met the chairman of the Scottish railways, and it is rather remarkable that they are not agreed. In 1921 Mr. Allan, chairman of the...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: ill come to that in a moment. They are evidently not agreed. The North British in 1908 wanted one group for the whole of Scotland. That was the ideal. Now the Caledonian Company want a group of themselves and certain other railways, and the formation of two groups. To-day it is claimed that the Scottish railways wish to be grouped longitudinally. It is agreed that the freight rates in...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: Has one hon. Member dared to say that he advocated the putting up of the freight rates? Not one. I do not think it is necessary to put up the rates. You could improve the shareholders' position. That is not what we are here to do, but to see justice done to the community. The maintenance of Scottish railways has for a very long time been on a far more frugal basis than the English standard of...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I am giving it as nearly as I can per mile or vehicle or locomotive. It does not matter whether it is pounds or pence. I will not say whether it is adequate or inadequate; it is not as high as England, and these vanishing dividends that have been talked about were being paid with that lower standard of maintenance. They ask for help. They say that the outcome of the seven years War...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I am dealing with the association as a whole. That is the sum we have arrived at, to wipe off the whole of the State's liability for this period. [An HON. MEMBER: "It is too much."] It may be too much, but we think it is fair, and we have made the bargain subject to the ratification by the House. The next interest that may be called upon to help the Scottish railways—if they are as bad as...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: My hon. Friend speaks with knowledge of the North British Railway when he says, "Hear, hear!" They view it with equanimity. On the other hand, authorities equal to himself say it will kill traffic to increase the rates.

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: They have not said so to me. The alternative offered is to make the English trader pay; to leave the Scotch rates at their present level and let the English trader pay higher rates in order to support the Scotch railways. Is that possible? The third interest to which I refer is that of the shareholders. I do not wish to commit myself as to what the exact terms will be on which Parliament will...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: Do they suppose for a moment that this third alternative is possible and that they can come with this proposal to the English companies, having declared themselves to be bankrupt, with all their propaganda on record, with the speeches of their chair- men on record, with the circulars they have issued available in print—do they imagine they can come forward and say to the English companies:...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: In London—in my room—they said unless it is on a pre-War basis we do not want to be fused with the English companies. That was told me by the Chairman of the Committee of Chairmen who came to see me. They asked that English shareholders should take them over on that basis. Here there is a fault. I think I ought to speak plainly. There are a large number of Members representing Scottish...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: Quite so, but were there no difficulties and no anomalies before? There were anomalies everywhere. They did not try to meet the men to talk this matter over with them. In March last I spoke to the Industrial Secretary of the National Union of Railwaymen. He said quite clearly that in some cases an eight-hour day was really ridiculous. He had consulted his executive, and they agreed to go into...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: They have made no attempt to settle this matter. The fact is the Scottish companies have overstated their case. In the first place, they said they were £3,500,000 worse off than in 1913. But they could give no evidence of it. Later on they produced another estimate showing that they were £7,000,000 worse off than in 1913. That, too, was challenged, and they withdrew it. There are no figures...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: If the Scottish companies will come with representative Scottish Members and talk this matter over on a business basis, I think we ought to get to a settlement. So long as they remain in the skies, I see no hope. I have no money, but I will endeavour in every possible way to meet a difficult situation. It is difficult because of the past, and because of what they have done during the War. I...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: That can be dealt with in Committee.

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I was there long before my hon. and gallant Friend.

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (30 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I think, on the whole, the House will approve of the Bill. I hope that we will be able to improve it very much in Committee. It is not a party measure. For better or worse, whether it is successful or not, it is an honest endeavour on behalf of myself, the railway companies and those traders who are organised and can be coherent, with a contribution from the men, to arrive at a fair...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (26 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I beg to move, "That the Bill be now read a Second time." In inviting the House to give a Second Reading to the Railways Bill, 1921, I shall be as brief as possible in my remarks, and I think that will meet the convenience of the House, especially as a very full explanatory memorandum—which I hope was of assistance to hon. Members—was circulated with the Bill, I would first like to bring...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (26 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: Is it to be done with the money of the taxpayers, is it to be done by increasing the charges to such an extent that those charges will give new revenue, is it to be done by economy and by enabling economies which hitherto have not been possible? Before the War, in 1913, the railway capital of the country, taking the whole of the railway capital, earned 4⅓ per cent. Even then that was a very...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (26 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I do not think it will be very helpful for my right hon. Friend to interrupt. Through a variety of causes the costs of our railways are very high from a capital point of view. The French railways cost £30,000 per mile of line equipped. That includes everything which goes to make a running railway. [An HON. MEMBER: "Single line or double line?"] Not per track mile, but per line mile. In...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (26 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: That Board examined railway wages and, generally speaking, it raised them to the level at which they now stand. It also took hours into consideration. I merely mention that fact so as to forestall the statement that the railways would never have got into anything like this position if the Government had not been in control or authority. On the whole, I do not think that we can say that...

Orders of the Day — Railways Bill. (26 May 1921)

Sir Eric Geddes: I am stating the attitude of the Government. It is not usual in this House to give the opinion of the Law Officers of the Crown.


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