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Woolwich Arsenal (Printing Department)

Volume 148: debated on Wednesday 9 November 1921

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asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office if he is aware that the linotype operators employed in the Ordnance Committee's printing department at Woolwich Arsenal have been informed that they must sweep out the room in which they work or be discharged if they refuse; that the labourer who formerly did this work has been discharged on the ground of economy; and whether he will take steps to prevent skilled artisans being dismissed through refusing to do labourers' work?

The instructions that linotype operators must clean out their room have been cancelled. No skilled artisans have been discharged for refusing to do labourers' work.

Is there any reason why military officers should be placed in charge of a printing office and introduce Army methods?


asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office if he is aware that the printing staff employed at Woolwich Arsenal have been refused the week's holiday which is granted in every other printing office throughout Great Britain; if he is aware that considerable correspondence has passed upon the subject between the men's representatives and the Department during the past 18 months without satisfactory result; and will he see that the printers in the employ of the Government are placed in the same position in respect to holidays as those employed by contractors?

There are two staffs of printers at Woolwich Arsenal, belonging to the Ordnance Factories and the Ordnance Committee respectively. These two staffs are tinder different conditions as regards pay, etc., and the questions connected with their terms of service are somewhat complicated. I am looking into the point raised by the right hon. Member and will communicate with him as soon as possible.