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Cheese Ration (Building Workers, Maldon)

Volume 441: debated on Wednesday 6 August 1947

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57.

asked the Minister of Food if he will modify his definition of rural building-trade workers in order to overcome some of the anomalies which have attended his recent concession of an extra cheese ration; and, in particular, if he will authorise the issue of such a ration to employees of Messrs. S. Hardy-King, 35, Market Hill, Maldon, Essex, who are to be engaged for several months in building work at a site slightly less than two miles from the town of Maldon, but on an island.

I am afraid I cannot agree to modify the regulations to meet this case. The test must be whether the workers are regularly employed under the qualifying conditions.

Is my right hon. Friend aware that various food offices interpret his regulations in various ways, and interpret the definition of a town quite differently? Some seem to apply the word "town" to quite a small place which has no canteen or meals facilities of any kind?

We always knew that this concession would land us into difficult questions of demarcation, and that is why we were rather reluctant to make it, but we shall have to work out these qualifying conditions as carefully as possible.