Mr Henry Strauss: 8.7 per cent.
Mr Henry Strauss: I thank the hon. Member for Anglesey (Mr. C. Hughes) for two things, first for his courtesy in letting me know some of the ground that he would cover—and he has covered a great deal—and also for the vigour and hope of his attitude. I like the practical approach. He is quite right in saying that the position of an area such as Anglesey differs in law and in practice from a Development...
Mr Henry Strauss: —for a firm with whom negotiations are now proceeding. Though I cannot endeavour to cover the whole subject matter of his speech, I welcome his practical and hopeful approach, and I shall see that everything he has said is brought to the notice of those who are conducting the survey.
Mr Henry Strauss: Since the answer contains a table of figures, I will with my hon. Friend's permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.
Mr Henry Strauss: The rate of unemployment in Portsmouth is still above the national average, but considerable industrial development is now in prospect and should make a noticeable contribution to employment there. We shall continue to watch the position, but at the moment other areas are in greater need.
Mr Henry Strauss: I agree with my hon. and gallant Friend about the improvement, and I assure him that the industrial developments which are now in prospect may make a further notable contribution to the cause that he has in mind.
Mr Henry Strauss: Fordham and Company announced on 6th April that they intended to close their factory on the Pallion Estate at the end of May. The Board of Trade will, of course, give all the help they can in finding a suitable tenant to take over this factory.
Mr Henry Strauss: There are some 300 tenants of factories on the Estates in this area and some closures must be expected from time to time. I appreciate that the hon. Member regrets that, but I am glad to say that the total employment in our north-eastern factories this winter has been higher than during any previous winter.
Mr Henry Strauss: As I said in my original answer, the Board of Trade will give all the help that they can in finding a suitable new tenant for this factory.
Mr Henry Strauss: The purposes for which the Furniture Development Council was established are laid down in the Second Schedule of the Furniture Industry Development Council Order, S.I. 2774 of 1948. I agree that the Council has done much useful work and has contributed greatly to the working out of the B.S.I. performance standards. A considerable and increasing number of firms are using its services, although...
Mr Henry Strauss: I think I need only add that no representation has been made about the Council to the Board of Trade since the last statutory review.
Mr Henry Strauss: I will bear in mind what my hon. Friend has said.
Mr Henry Strauss: I think that the hon. Lady is asking a supplementary question on the wrong Question.
Mr Henry Strauss: My right hon. Friend welcomes the support given to the scheme by the trade interests who have co-operated in the publication of this leaflet. Many manufacturers have applied for licences to use the Kite mark but the adoption of the scheme is voluntary. Her Majesty's Government have never given a pledge that all manufacturers would apply the Kite mark, but they hope that the value of the mark...
Mr Henry Strauss: I am afraid that is quite a different question, and I should not like my remarks to be interpreted in one way or the other in relation to that question.
Mr Henry Strauss: No, it must remain entirely voluntary, but how far it is adopted will, in my opinion, depend on what the public wants.
Mr Henry Strauss: Yes, that is quite accurate.
Mr Henry Strauss: The Secretary of the Savoy Hotel Limited has informed my right hon. Friend that the observations of the directors are being prepared and that he may expect to receive them in the course of a week or so.
Mr Henry Strauss: I think the hon. Member is under a misapprehension. The other inquiry was under a totally different section of the Act and quite different considerations apply. There has been no undue delay on the part of the directors in answering the request for observations which my right hon. Friend made.
Mr Henry Strauss: There is no general shortage of cigarettes, but I am aware that some distributors may not be able to get as many cigarettes of certain brands as they would like. I do not think that there are any grounds for referring this matter to the Monopolies Commission.