§ MR. LAWSON (St. Pancras, W.)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether his attention has been drawn to the constant occurrence of accidents to parachutists at exhibitions in places of public amusement; and, if any, and if so, what, precautions are insisted upon by the police authorities in respect of apparatus, &c.? I also wish to know if it is proposed to take any steps to put a stop to these exhibitions?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. MATTHEWS,) Birmingham, E.
Yes, Sir, I have observed that in some cases accidents have occurred at the performances in question. The police have no authority to interfere, as the law does not prohibit public performances by adult persons on account of their danger. All that the police can do, and this has been done in the case of the recent performances at the Alexandra Palace, is to warn the managers of such exhibitions of the responsibilities which may attach to them if any accident should happen. The manager of the Alexandra Palace has written to me to say that, before engaging any of these parachutists, he takes the utmost pains to satisfy himself as to the safety of the performance, so far as can be judged from certificates of previous ascents and actual experience.
§ MR. LAWSON
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman if it is proposed to take any further action in the matter?