§ Sir R. Glyn
asked the President of the Board of Trade what is the position of leather stocks today suitable for boot and shoe repair; what has been the increase in the 12 oz. used in soling and heeling on the 1947 prices; and why there has been this rise in prices.
§ Mr. H. Wilson
Stocks of sole leather used in the repair trade are not separately recorded. At the latest date for which statistics are available—30th November, 1947—stocks of sole leather for all purposes in the hands of tanners, factors, and merchants stood at just over one month's supply. Stocks in the hands of shoe repairers are not recorded, but I understand that they are very small. The rise in price of leather is due to the removal on 1st January, 1948, of the subsidies on hides, skins and tanning materials. New provisional prices of leather to cover the increased cost of the raw materials have been introduced and these are in process of being checked, but the increase in tanners' prices for the principal range of bends used by repairers is estimated to be about 60 per cent.