§ 53. Sir A. MARKHAM
asked the Prime Minister whether he is aware that, though an undertaking was given to this House that police shall not be sent to racecourse meetings, a chief detective-inspector from Scotland Yard, together with other detective officers, were last week sent to the Gatwick meeting for the purpose of shadowing suspected pickpockets and welshers; will he say whether His Majesty's Government have entered into any undertaking with the Jockey Club or any other racing body permitting racing to be continued during the War; and will he state the reasons why His Majesty's Government consider racing necessary during the War?
§ The PRIME MINISTER
With regard to the first part of the question, I must refer to the answer given by the Home Secretary on the 25th May. With regard to the second, the Government have not entered into any agreement as regards race meetings with the Jockey Club or any other body for the period of the War. Strong representations were made that race meetings at some places in addition to Newmarket were very desirable in the interest of horse breeding, and the Jockey Club and National Hunt Committee were informed that the Government would not object to a limited number of other meetings provided no demands were made on the railways.
§ Sir A. MARKHAM
Will the right hon. Gentleman answer the question on the Paper: What was the reason why His Majesty's Government considered racing necessary during the War?
§ Mr. SPEAKER
I have already pointed out to the hon. Member that this is not a subject on which questions can be asked. The Government cannot know that; the horses have been leased.
§ Mr. FLAVIN
As far as Ireland is concerned, is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the continuance of racing in Ireland is a matter of serious importance in connection with the question of horse breeding in Ireland?