§ 13. Mr. RHYS DAVIES
asked the Secretary for Mines, whether he is aware that Stotts Pit, Westhoughton, is again threatened with flooding; and will he take steps to initiate a co-operative pumping scheme for this area?
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
I have been informed of the position at this colliery, but, as the hon. Member is aware, in order to establish a joint pumping scheme it is in practice necessary to have in favour of such a scheme a majority of the colliery owners who would have to work it. My Department would, of course, be ready to give any assistance in their power to the colliery owners concerned.
§ Mr. DAVIES
Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that during the last 10 years 16 collieries have been closed down within a four-mile radius of this pit; and that other pits in the neighbourhood are likely to be flooded unless a co-operative pumping scheme is established?
§ 15. Mr. TINKER
asked the Secretary for Mines whether a report has reached the Mines Department of the inrush of water at the Stott Colliery, Westhoughton; is he aware that there are a number of collieries within a few miles that come within the danger zone if the water reaches a certain height; and will he cause full inquiries to be made so that effective safety precautions can be taken?
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
Yes, Sir, I have received a report on the flooding of the Stotts Pit of the Westhoughton Colliery. From the investigations already made it would appear that at present it does not give rise to any question of danger in relation to other collieries since the only workings in the immediate vicinity have already been abandoned. A close watch is, however, being kept on the position by His Majesty's inspectors.
§ Mr. TINKER
In view of the large number of collieries which have suffered in various parts of the country through adequate protection not being given in time, will the hon. and gallant Gentleman see to it at once that the colliery companies are brought together to investigate this matter along with the mines inspectors?
§ Mr. RHYS DAVIES
Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that pumping was stopped in this neighbourhood years ago and that several collieries have been flooded in consequence of the rising of this water; and is there any possibility of getting the companies together to start a co-operative pumping scheme?
§ Mr. ROWSON
Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that certain pits further south will suffer the same fate within ten years unless steps are taken and that the cost of saving those collieries would not be more than £4,000 per annum?