20 MARCH 1942, Page 23




THE forty-second annual general meeting of the London Brick Com- pany Limited was held on March 17th at the Connaught Rooms, Great Queen Street, London, W.C.

Sir P. Malcolm Stewart, Bt., O.B.E., LL.D., D.L., J.P., the chairman of the company, presided.

The chairman said: Ladies and gentlemen,—I presume it is your wish to take the report and accounts as read. (Agreed.)

If you will refer to the liabilities side of the balance-sheet you will notice that sundry creditors and accrued charges at £286,562 show an increase of £16,781 on last year's figures, due partly to increased pro- vision for taxation and to the provision for contributions that may become payable on the works under Part I of the War Damage Act, 1941.

The reserve for taxation and contingencies at £370,000 remains unchanged. To the general reserve £5o,000 has been transferred. This account now stands at £450,0oo.


If you will turn to the assets side of the balance-sheet you will observe that there have been added to freehold land £3,85o, to cottages, &c., £6,480, and to works buildings, &c., £38,190. These additions are accounted for by the purchase of the itglesford Works and pro- perty, by purchases of land, by additions to our fleet of motor-vehicles, and by minor necessary alterations effected at the works. The total of all these assets, after writing off £1oo,000 from works, kilns, machinery, &c., is £1,848,520, which is £51,480 less than the corre- sponding figure of the previous year. The low figure at which these users now stand in the books will be a source of strength in the diffi- cult times confronting us and, if it is found desirable, may permit of the easing of the burden of depreciation.

With regard to the items £74,000 for shares in subsidiary company and £57,265 for loan, these result from the purchase in October last of the share capital Of the Clock House Brick Company Limited, an acquisition which will, it is hoped, prove of considerable value post- war. The name of this company is somewhat misleading as it manu- factures a high grade hollow block. Its works are situated in Surrey and as our hollow block works are located at Arlesey, in Bedfordshire, our facilities for the manufacture and distribution of this important product will be much increased.

Stocks in trade at £236,201 are up by £54,313, consequent on the heavy stacking of bricks towards the end of the year. Sundry debtors and advance payments are down by £166,718, owing to falling-off in trade in the latter months of the past year.

Liquid investments at £347,615, loan, free of interest, to H.M. Treasury LT50,000, and cash at bankers and British Government securities £652,817 total £1,150,432, an increase of liquid assets on the previous year's total of £100,081.


Turning to the profit and loss account, you will notice that the profit on trading amounts to £365,565, an increase on that of the previous year of £28,246. However, I wish you particularly to note that the actual relative profits earned showed a substantial decrease, since in the year 1940 the sum of £60,250 was specifically written off our fleet d motor-vehicles, whereas last year it was not deemed necessary to make any provision for its depreciation in view of the low figure at which it stands in the books of the company. Interest and income from investments at £20,435 are up by £3,623. The total reventre it £366,210 shows an increase of £31,885, the incidence of which has been explained.

The year 1941 opened under favourable conditions, good deliveries being made in the early months. The improved demand was well maintained until towards the end of September, when it became only too apparent that a decline was setting in. Prior to this our unrivalled fatilities for prompt dispatch of pressed bricks, often in large consign- ments, had been freely availed of over a wide area.


About the same time that the decline in demand set in the Minister of Transport had found it necessary to limit the transportation of bricks h9 rail to 75 miles, road transport having been previously limited to 50 miles. This sudden and unexpected blow caused an immediate slump in our rail deliveries. It hit us hard. I fear that this need for the limitation of transport is causing the advantages arising from the krY low fuel consumption and man-power employed in the production of pressed bricks to be overlooked.

The report and accounts were unanimously adopted, and a final mvidend of 5 per cent, actual, making to per cent, for the year, was approved.