§ Mr. Roy Hughes
asked the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received from the Transport and General Workers Union concerning the importation of Spanish slate; what action he has taken in the matter; and what reply he has sent to the union.
§ Mr. Nicholas Edwards
Representatives of the Transport and General Workers Union were members of a delegation led by the hon. Members for Caernarfon (Mr. Wigley) and Meirionnydd Nant Conwy (Mr. Thomas) which met with officials of my Department and of the Departments of Environment and Trade and Industry on 19 January 1984 to express concern about the current level of imports of Spanish slate.
Since the meeting consideration has been given to the calls made for a strict application of the British Standard for roofing slate—BS680—and for local authorities to specify BS680 when preparing contracts in which slate will be used.
I have written to the hon. Member for Meirionnydd Nant Conwy to inform him that local authorities are advised by my Department and the Department of the Environment to stipulate in their building contracts that materials used should meet the appropriate British Standard; that is intended to ask the British Standards Institute to carry out a revision of BS680; and that in the current review of the building regulations in England and Wales consideration will be given to the possibility of incorporating some or all of the standard's provisions in the new system.