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Burning Pit-Heaps, Northumberland

Volume 345: debated on Thursday 30 March 1939

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64.

asked the Minister of Health the number of active burning pit-heaps in Northumberland; the number which have been extinguished; and the location of the extinguished heaps?

There are 20 burning pit-heaps in the county. Two have been extinguished, at West Sleekburn and Bomarsund.

Will the Minister give an assurance that steps will be taken in the near future to deal with this menace?

My right hon. Friend is anxious to do all he can in this matter. These burning pit-heaps have been visited by inspectors who have made suggestions for remedial measures, and so far two burning pit-heaps have been dealt with.

Is not provision made in the Civil Defence Bill for dealing with this menace, and, if so, can we have an assurance that the necessary steps will be taken immediately?

My right hon. Friend is giving the matter continuous consideration and doing all that he can.

Is not this a matter of the utmost importance from the defence point of view, and ought it not to be done by compulsory measures?