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Volume 415: debated on Monday 12 November 1945

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asked the President of the Board of Trade whether any arrangements are being made to supplement the supply of traditional timbers used by the furniture industry by the use of lesser known Empire timbers on a much larger scale than was the custom before the war.

Yes, Sir. The use of lesser known Empire timbers has been developed considerably during the war and manufacturers will be encouraged to continue that use.

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in order to help meet the need for domestic furniture, he will consider granting to firms, which have been engaged in laminated timber constructional work for aircraft, licences to manufacture furniture.

A number of such firms have already been designated. Shortage of materials prevents further designation for the present, except in very special cases.

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the virtual impossibility of placing orders for divans in the London area; and if he will advise holders of furniture units not to insist upon ordering divans for a period of several months in order to give manufacturers an opportunity to catch up with their present arrears.

I am doing everything possible to improve production of divans, but at the moment there is a serious shortage of covering materials. I agree with my hon. Friend that it would be most helpful if holders of furniture permits would refrain from ordering divans for the present. Deliveries of metal bedsteads are satisfactory, and I hope that these will be ordered instead.