§ 33. Mr. Ivor Thomas
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in view of the changes recently made in the U.S.A., Canada and Australia with regard to men's suits, he will consider relaxing any of the restrictions on suits in this country.
§ Mr. Dalton
These restrictions, since they were introduced in March, 1942, have resulted in a considerable saving of cloth and labour. But a new situation has been created by the intention of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for War, after consultation with other Departments concerned including my own and as part of his plans for clothing soldiers on demobilisation, to issue suits which are free from these restrictions. Orders will, I understand, shortly be placed, and I am advised that it would not be practicable in these conditions to maintain the restrictions on the manufacture of suits for the general public. I have, therefore, decided that men's suits may again be made without any restriction on styles as from the 1st February, but may not be supplied to the public until the 1st March. I have also decided that the coupon pointing of the "non-austerity" suit shall be 26, while the "austerity" suit, as from 1st February, will be down-pointed from 26 to 20 coupons, the pointing for coat, waistcoat and trousers each being reduced by two coupons.
§ Mr. Thomas
Is my right hon. Friend aware that many of us will now be able to buy a new suit for the first time during the war and that we are very grateful to him?
§ Mr. Gallacher
Why has the Minister waited until I have bought a suit without pockets, before bringing in this change?