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Railway Dining Car Attendants

Volume 180: debated on Tuesday 13 August 1907

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I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade if his attention has been called to the number of hours worked by the dining-car staff engaged on the important trains on the principal railways of Great Britain; whether he can see his way to request the several railway companies to furnish a complete Return of the actual hours this class of servants were on the trains each turn of duty during the month of July, 1907; and what other steps he proposes to take, if any, in this matter.

Dining car attendants would not appear to come within the scope of either the Regulation of Railways Act, 1889, or the Railway Regulation Act, 1893, and the Board of Trade have therefore no powers which would enable them to take the action suggested.

said that although by Act of Parliament certain powers had been given to the Board, these men did not come within their scope. The Regulation of Railways Act, 1889, applied only to servants whose duties involved the safety of trains or passengers, while the Act of 1903 dealt with men engaged in working the traffic. These men came within neither category, and the Board consequently had not the power the hon. Member seemed to think.

asked whether the Government were not in a position to bring influence to bear on the railway companies to arrange proper hours.

said they could make representations, but there was no statutory force behind them.

Seeing that these men are employed on the trains will the hon. Gentleman further consider their case?