20 NOVEMBER 1926, Page 3

In the House of Commons on Tuesday Sir Kingsley Wood

traced the cost of the coal dispute from the point of view of local relief. The local authorities will need • to borrow £5,175,000. They distributed in the six months ending with September £13,000,000, as against r7,000,000 in the corresponding period last year. In one union half the population are on the rates. The Government has made no difficulty about providing loans. These were granted at 5 per cent. for varying periods which will be determined later when local conditions have been sufficiently studied. Several Unionists posed the question whether it would not be better frankly to make grants instead of loans, in order to prevent industry being driven away from necessitous areas by the overwhelming rates. If it was really right to relieve persons who would not work, although work was offered, should not that responsibility, it was asked, be accepted by the State ? Mr. _Neville Chamberlain pointed out that the Government could not establish the principle that dependants should always be supported during an industrial dispute.

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