13 APRIL 1929, Page 16


[To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.]

Sia,—Mr. Roberts, I am afraid, expects too much from a common use of railway wagons. If he will study the evidence before the Samuel Commission he will find that, as regards the coal industry, Sir Ralph Wedgwood, speaking on behalf of the railway companies, estimated that the saving would not amount to more than one penny per ton ; and, as a matter of fact, the representatives of the coal industry itself have shown that, for reasons that would take some space to explain, even this estimate is very much too high.

In any event, on the North-East Coast, where over 80 per cent. of the wagons are already railway owned, the advantage —if any—does not seem to accrue to the coal industry.—