Skip to main content
Hide Articles List

28 articles on this Page

JfOVEL SHIP IN SWANSEA.

DEATH OF MR. GORDON ANDREWS.

OTTAWA FIRE FUND.

SWANSEA CORONERSHIP.

THE CANINE DEFENCE LEAGUE.

THE TRADE OF THE PORT AND…

TRADE DURING THE MONTH OF…

[No title]

THE PRICE OF COAL.

News
Cite
Share

THE PRICE OF COAL. [FROM A CORRESPONDENT.] The reported intention of colliery proprie- tors to raise the price of coal to railway companies by no less than 5s. per ton is a most serious matter for these great corpora- tions, and the fact is fully recognised by the financial world. For the past two years or so the price of coal has shown a marked up- ward tendency, and, indeed, no one has better reason for knowing it than the London house- holder. One of the chief causes of this rise in values is to be found in the enormous activity that now prevails in the manu- facturing world, and especially in those branches connected with the steel, iron, and engineering trades. Every factory in Great Britain has as much work as it can get through, and many orders have gone to America owing to the inability of the home establishments to cope with the demand. Shipbuilding, bridge and other constructional steel making, machine tool manufacture, engine building, are all being carried on to an unprecedented extent, and, as a matter of course, the firms who supply the materials for these industries are just as prosperous. Now it must be recollected that in every one of these great industries coal plays an essen- tial—indeed, a principal—part. You cannot melt metals, for. instance, without coal—at all events, on a large scale—and one result of the present plentifulness or orders is that the demand for coal has increased vastly during the past few years. In 1896 the best Welsh coal sold at 10s. to 10s. 6d. per ton. At present it is being sold at 20s. to 22s. 6d. a ton, and e' en this is rather cheaper than it was in i.898, when the great Welsh coal strike was going on. In 1896 ordinary good York- shire and North Country coal could be bought for from 7s. to 9s. a ton. Exactly the same stuff is now priced at 12s. to 17s. Best Welsh foundry coak. which four years ago was 16s. a ton, now rules at 32s. 6d. to 33s. 6d. The price of iron and steel has advanced in almost, the same ratio. Steel rails were pro- curable in 1896 at £4 10s. to £4 15s. a ton. Now they range from £7 5s. to £7 10s. A remarkable statement was made the other day to the effect that old steel rails were be- ing sold as scrap in Sheffield for more money than they cost when new. It is often stated by the colliery proprietors that enhanced wages paid to their men have led to the rise in the price of coal; but a 20 per cent. in- crease of pay to the miner does not account for from 50 to 100 per cent. rise in the cost of Ihe coal. The consumption of coal by our great rail- way companies is gigantic. In fact, this item forms one of the most serious in the list of working expenses. Such lines as the North- Westeru, Midland, Great Western, North- Eastern, and Great Northern use a quantity of fuel per annum that runs into hundreds of thousands of tons—the first named expends over £300,000 a year on this account — and anyone can see what an increase of the coal bill to the extent of fully one-half will mean. X remedy for the present state of affairs 13 perhaps difficult to find. The export of coal frcm this country amounts annually to about 40.000.000 tons out of a total production of c\er 200,000,000, and it has been suggested that a duty of, say, one shilling per ton would operate at once to prevent the too free despatch from Great Britain of a mineral which is one of her most important sources of wealth, and, at the same time, to give pome relief to the already burdened taxpayer. Another cure advocated in some quarters is the enactment of a statutory limit to the price of coal. In the case of the railway com- panies they may provide their own remedy and fight the colliery owners with petroleum. that is. adapt their locomotives for oil-fuel burning. That enterprising line, the Great Eastern, has already taken this step with a number of its engines, and it is understood the experiment has proved completely suc- cessful, both as regards efficiency and economy. Some of the gas companies appear to be taking a leaf out of the same book. The writer knevs one suburban corporation which is at the present time manufacturing its illuminating ware out of petroleum and ^fiter!— Daily Telegraph."

[No title]

THE WAR IN SOUTH AFRICA,

RED CROSS FUND,

THE GRAND THEATRE.

BAND OF HOPE DEMONSTRATION.

Advertising

I SALES BY AUCTION.

------LOCAL FIXTURES OF FORTHCOMING…

LOCAL NEWS.

THE SWANSEA HOSPITAL.

--------SPRING AILMENTS.

[No title]

[No title]

"RELIGIOUS FREE THOUGHT."

TO THE EDITOR OF "THE CAXBRIJTN."

TO THE EDITOR OF " THE CAMBRIAN."

TO THE EDITOR OF "THE CAMBRIAN."

ISWANSEA BOARD OF GUARDIANS.

NOTES & NOTIONS.