asked the President of the Board of Trade what was the average weekly output of coal per man during the present year as compared with the average weekly output per man during the year preceding the War?
A comparison of the output per man per week would be misleading, as the working of short time, owing to trade depression, has been far more prevalent in the present year than in the year before the War. The output per man per shift worked was slightly under 21 cwts. in the former period. In the latter period it was slightly over 17 cwts., but shows a steady tendency to rise. In September it was nearly 18½ cwts. My hon. Friend is, of course, aware that the statutory limitation of hours of employment underground was changed in 1919 from eight to seven.