§ 19. Vice-Admiral Hughes Hallett
asked the Paymaster-General if he will give a general direction to the National Coal Board that any reduction in its non-industrial staff shall not be applied in the same proportion to research staffs, without his specific approval.
§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Power (Sir Ian Horobin)
No, Sir. The Board has no intention of reducing the research effort which is of great importance, but it is for the Board to decide what staff is required to carry it out.
§ Vice-Admiral Hughes Hallett
Is my hon. Friend aware that there is a certain amount of anxiety on this subject? Does he not agree that his noble Friend the Minister of Power has a rather special responsibility for research? Does my hon. Friend agree that this is not the 897 time to cut down on research in the coal industry, whether from the point of view of coal getting or of coal utilisation?
§ Sir I. Horobin
I quite agree with my hon. and gallant Friend, who will be pleased to know that expenditure this year is not likely to differ materially from expenditure last year. My hon. and gallant Friend will, I am sure, agree that we should all be searching always for economies. This is a small instalment.