§ 21. Mr. W. Baxter
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what action he proposes to take to seek to bring industry to West Stirlingshire.
§ Mr. Gordon Campbell
I have been working closely with the Ministers who have direct responsibility for industry to attract firms to such areas in Scotland. We have included within the West Central Scotland Special Development Area that part of West Stirlingshire in which the unemployment problem is most serious.
§ Mr. Baxter
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that until recently West Stirlingshire was looked upon as a mining 436 area but that there is now only one pit in operation and that throughout the county the rate of unemployment is exceedingly high? Is he aware that the area to which he refers, Kilsyth, at the moment has a male unemployment rate of 25.6 per cent., one of the highest in the country? Is it not time that something was done to encourage local industries and to attract other industries into the area? I hope that he will take immediate action to help.
§ Mr. Campbell
What the hon. Gentleman said is perfectly true about Kilsyth being an area where unemployment is especially worrying. My hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Development had a meeting with a deputation from Kilsyth early in October to discuss these matters. This question is directly concerned with bringing industry into the area. I agree with the hon. Gentleman that local expansion is also needed.