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THE COAL TRADE

for boys for every working day that the man attends for work was granted for the whole country—subsequently increased, in June, 1918, to 3s. and 1s. 6d. respectively. 2s. a day extra was granted from Jan., 1919.

Coincidentally with the fall of output there was a great increase in demand for coal for Admiralty and transport purposes, as well as for munition-making, and export to France and Italy. A considerable shortage of coal developed in the home market; and in 1917 the Government was obliged to assume control, and private customers were rationed. The supply of coal was a vital national question, and there was much investigation of labour troubles and of the conditions of mining before the Government went to the length of assuming control of the industry. Much extraordinarily interesting information was thus made public for the first time in the history of the coal-mining industry.

A list of the principal special Government publications dealing with coal-mining during the War period will be found on page 863 of this impression.

Government control of the mining industry has taken the form of guaranteeing to the colliery companies the same average rate of profit which they made during the three years previous to the outbreak of war. This arrangement has been criticized as tending to introduce slackness into the management. The great rise in the price of coal which has resulted from the increased working costs during the War is shown in the table on page 867. When the statutory reduction of hours was brought into operation (July, 1919) and the miners refused to pledge themselves to Govern-