§ Sir H. NORMAN
I beg to move "That, in view especially of the economy in fuel and its transport that would be effected by shortening the hours of artificial lighting, this House would welcome a measure for the advancement of clock time by one hour during the summer months of this year."
I am more than ever conscious, after eight years' advocacy of the course it proposes, that the proposal suffers from two great disadvantages. In the first place, it is too simple. To believe that great benefit can be conferred upon many millions of people, and an economy of millions of pounds secured, merely by putting the hand of the clock forward an hour, seems to those who have not given some careful thought to the matter to exhibit a ludicrous disproportion between effect and cause. They are as unwilling to be cured by a simple expedient of their wasteful use of daylight hours as was Naaman of his leprosy. "If the prophet had bid them do some great thing" they would have been more ready to obey. As the Syrian scorned the Jordan, so they scorn the hour-hand of the clock. In the second place, this simple proposal lends itself almost irresistibly to what the French call "la blague." Nothing is easier than to poke fun at it. All the professional wits of the French Press have revelled in it for a month. M. Painleveé, the eminent scientist, who as Minister of Public Instruction and of Inventions has officially championed the reform, and to whom its ultimate success in France will be chiefly due, is known as the modern Joshua. He has attempted to arrest the steeds of the chariot of Phœbus. In fact, the French wits have gravely discussed whether, on the whole, we should be better with or without the contents of the particular hour he proposes to steal. They have declared the proposal to alter our social habits by altering the clock to be as absurd as to try to change the weather by changing the barometer. We have had something of the same kind here. I remember the last time I spoke on this subject in this House, seven years ago, a friend of mine asked me the conundrum, What would twelve o'clock be—would it be eleven o'clock or one o'clock? Another 302 hon. Member asked me if I had ever milked a cow. An agricultural witness indignantly asked us at the Select Committee whether we really expected him to go to bed with the chickens.
The very simplicity of the proposal constitutes its most attractive feature to those who have once grasped it. Certainly the tragic necessities of this year make any kind of fun on the subject distasteful to us all. Therefore we can approach the matter once more with entire seriousness, with a new and irresistible argument in its favour, and, this time, as it would appear, with an almost unanimous public support. The proposal is indeed very simple, but appreciation of it is hampered for many people by curious views about time in general. Therefore I would like to say a few words about time. Many people appear to regard time—I use the word in its horological and not in its metaphysical sense—and our method of reckoning it, as something peculiarly sacred, something irrevocably fixed in the order of things. Based as it is upon the heavenly bodies, it seems to them to possess an almost semi-divine sanction. I feel sure there are many worthy people who regard any proposal to tamper, as they say, with the hands of the clock as savouring of irreverence. Even the Prime Minister the other day seemed to suggest that there was something rather noxious about Central European Time, which, by the way, has been changed even since he spoke. I submit that there is no such thing as time in the sense in which I have defined the word; at least, I have come across no definition of it. If you ask an astronomer what is time he will probably reply, "It depends upon what time you mean. Do you mean sidereal time, or mean solar time, or apparent solar time, or Irish time, or Greenwich civil time, or legal time, or lighting-up time, or closing time, or what?" One of these times depends upon the hour-angle of the vernal equinox, another upon the sundial, another upon the longitude of Dublin, another upon the Statute Book, another, and the most familiar, upon an astronomer's fairy tale. Some hon. Member may be inclined to say, "None of your subtleties. What I mean by time is the system by which it is twelve o'clock when the sun is over the meridian of Greenwich." I am not trying to be subtle. I am trying, perhaps not with success, to be simple; but, as a matter of fact, there is no such system.
303 There is no accepted time system by which it is twelve o'clock when the sun is over the meridian of Greenwich, nor even when it appears to be over the meridian of Greenwich. As a matter of fact, the sun has an apparent diurnal irregular eastward movement, with the result that solar time constantly fluctuates, and you cannot fix a regular noon by its appearance over the meridian of Greenwich. Therefore, astronomers have adopted the clever device of inventing an imaginary sun, moving in an imaginary manner, whose wholly imaginary motion coincides with the celestial equator, and from the calculated movements of this imaginary luminary they have devised a very convenient but wholly conventional time, which they call mean solar time, and which we know as Greenwich mean time. Twelve o'clock by Greenwich time is mean noon, and that is what we set our clocks by. But this, again, is only a convention, because Greenwich Mean Time, used as we use it from the North Foreland to Land's End, may be locally wrong by something like three-quarters of an hour. I would like to add, as I may be thought to be speaking rather flippantly of Greenwich Mean Time for the purpose of illustrating my argument, that, of course, the calculations upon which Greenwich mean time is based are of the most complex, the most refined and the most beautiful character, and constitute, as the world recognises, a masterpiece of astronomy and mathematics. Having said that, I hope I shall not be misunderstood when I say that of sidereal time we must speak with the greatest respect, for it is, except for a negligible wobble of the earth on its axis, an accurate, scientific, and regular reckoning. But mean solar time, certainly the hours of it, we may treat with familiarity because we have made it ourselves. I fear that all this may possibly have seemed a wilful digression from the subject, but it is not really so. It is really essential for us to grasp the fact that time, in our ordinary sense—that is, the position of the hands of our clocks—is only a convenient compromise, except for astronomers, and they take good care to base their time upon an immutable star and not upon the irregular sun. Our clock time is largely a matter of social convenience, with a general reference to the periods of daylight and darkness. When a man, looks at his watch and sees that it denotes twelve o'clock, what 304 does that mean to him? All his life he has never given a thought to meridians, or equinoxes, or suns, real or imaginary. What he thinks is that the morning is nearly gone, and that in one hour it will be lunch time, that he has a train to catch, or that he has an appointment with his dentist, or some practical matter of that kind. Clock time, in a word, controls the time-relations of a man with his fellow men, and that fact is the justification of the action proposed in this Motion. If the hands of all clocks are moved simultaneously, the time-relations of men in our society remain unaltered.
Therefore—and this is the conclusion of my argument—we are free to consider any other result that follows the simultaneous alteration of the hour hands of all our clocks. It is obvious to everybody that between five and six o'clock on a summer morning, when the sunlight is exquisite, the temperature is delicious, and the whole earth is at its sweetest, the vast majority of the inhabitants of the United Kingdom are asleep behind drawn curtains. At the other end of the day they are again behind drawn curtains, but they are burning artificial light. Could there be a more wasteful, more unhygienic, more senseless proceeding? The proposal before us is on Saturday night at the beginning of summer to advance the hour-hand of the clock by one hour, and on another Saturday night at the end of the summer to put it back again—that is, we should add one hour of daylight to our working time, and correspondingly transfer one hour of darkness to our sleeping time. That is, it would be as light at 9.30 at night as it is now at 8.30. Actually it would be done in this way, if the House sees fit to accept this Motion and the Government act on it: Next Sunday morning, or the Sunday morning after it—the method and time depend entirely on the Government—all public clocks, all railway and all post-office clocks when they reach 1 a.m. will be moved to 2 a.m., and when we wind our watches on going to bed we shall similarly advance them one hour.
§ Sir H. NORMAN
If the right hon. Baronet does not, then he will simply find himself out of gear with the whole human machine of which he is a distinguished part. What will be the result? We shall have one hour's less sleep that night. That will probably be no great matter, as most of us sleep too much in 305 any event. The trains then running, that is between 1 and 2 p.m. on Sunday morning, unless they increase their speed, will arrive one hour late. On the corresponding night in September we shall have one hour's extra sleep, and the trains running, unless they slow down, will arrive one hour early. Otherwise we should find no difference whatever whenever we get up, but instead of drawing blinds and lighting gas at eight o'clock we should find it light until nine. Everything else will be the same. The butcher, the baker, the milkman, the postman, will all come at the same hour as now. The trains will run at the same hour. Not a figure in Bradshaw will have to be altered. Banks and offices will open and close at the same hours as now. If this was done during the night without our knowledge, in all probability we should know nothing whatever of it during the day until the usual time of nightfall arrived, when we should say, "How light the evenings are becoming."
Is there anyone of us who has not been struck by the pathetic sight of men, boys, and girls hurrying from works and mills to get a little play while daylight lasts, struggling for their meagre recreation against the fading light? This simple change will give millions of workers an additional hour's daylight every day—that is 130 hours more daylight during the summer months, or the equivalent of sixteen eight-hour days. Surely the health, the refreshment, the happiness of such a gift cannot be overestimated! It will substitute outdoor for indoor life during that time. It will take an hour off the frequentation of the public-houses. Indeed, it will do more than that, for a great many of the workers will be in their gardens or allotments or in the cricket field, or on bicycles, until it is dark and the time has come for them to go home to supper and to bed. There will be another advantage peculiar to this year. We have all, of course, 'been struck by the large number of street accidents in London, owing to the necessary darkening of the streets. That extra hour's daylight during the busiest hour possible of the evening will save scores of lives in London during the coming months. It is unusual in this world to get anything for nothing. Therefore the question naturally arises, What is to be the cost of this great gift? It will be very much less than nothing. It will be one hour less of artificial lighting to pay for, an hour less a day of 306 candle-light, gas, oil, or electricity. That is, the cost of seven hours' lighting saved to every family every week, and every railway company, every tramway company and every municipality and every mill and works which is this year accustomed to work late. Evidence was given that the' London County Council tramways would save £10,000 a year. The general manager of the London and North-Western Railway Company stated that the railways would save £92,000 a year. The chairman of the-Sheffield Gas Company said that the-people of Sheffield would save £12,000 on-their gas during the summer months. A very careful and detailed estimate was-made according to which the savings of our whole country would be £2,500,000.
I do not present these figures with any claim to accuracy because only experience-can show what the economy will be, but it will certainly be great. If this proposal had been adopted eight years ago extra daylight amounting to 154 eight-hour days would have been secured, and something like £20,000,000 of fuel would have been saved which has simply been wasted. The greater part of artificial light, of course, is derived from coal. We are under the most urgent necessity this year of economising not only in coal but in its transport. The gas and electric lighting companies were recently ordered by the Board of Trade to secure 10 per cent reduction in their output. I do not know how they were expected to do that, but the adoption of this proposal would give-them instantly and automatically a much greater reduction than 10 per cent. If there were no other argument for the advancement of the clock than this certain economy, that argument, I submit to the House, would be conclusive this year. We are called upon to husband our national resources. This is a measure of direct efficiency, and it will be an Act, if adopted, of imperative patriotism. It is difficult to understand how anyone reading the striking letter of the Home Secretary—and let me say here that this measure, if it is adopted this year, will be due, more than to any other man, to the energy and courage of my right hon. Friend—can vote against this measure. The economy necessarily carries the social benefit with it, but, all other aspects apart, this measure is essential to our best national efforts this year. Next year, when we may have peace, all the results-will be on record to guide us for the future.
307 The opposition to this measure is negligible; in fact, some organs of public opinion, which were not very much in favour of it before, are convinced that they have always been amongst its warmest friends. In normal times there would have been certain difficulties connected with Continental mails and with Stock Exchange operations with New York. Those of us who are in favour of this measure think that neither of those objections is important, but they are practically non-existent this year. Some objection is taken on behalf of the agricultural interest. This will be dealt with by my hon. Friend the Member for Devizes (Mr. Peto), who will second this Motion, and who will, of course, speak upon the matter with far greater competence than I could. With regard to navigators, to whom reference has been made by occasional opponents, they will be affected in no way whatever. When they are at sea they will do precisely as they do now. When they are in port they will adjust their ships' clocks to local time, as they always have been in the habit of doing. But there is one point only to which I will venture to draw special attention, though I am sure it will not escape for a moment the attention of my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary. There may be a danger, there is a danger, that certain classes of employers, I should think few in number, may take advantage of this extra hour of daylight to get an extra hour's work out of their employés. Of course organised labour is well able to protect itself in that matter, but steps must be taken to safeguard unorganised labour from the action of unscrupulous employers, if such are to be found. I know of no other objections really worth considering, though there are still people, whose intelligence in other matters is trustworthy, who say, "If you want to get up earlier, why don't you do so? Why do you want the Government to make you get up?" I hesitate even to formally answer such an objection. It is obviously useless for the individual to alter his time-relations with his fellows unless at the same time they alter their time-relations with him. It is useless for a man to begin his own day earlier unless the milkman, and the baker, and the postman will call earlier, trains run earlier, and his office and bank and other people's offices open earlier. As Lord Dundreary sagely observed, "A bird cannot go into a corner and flock all by himself."
308 On the other hand, few proposals ever had such influential and widespread support. I will not weary the House with a long list, but I should like to mention that this proposal has the support of the Central Committee for the Disposal of Coal. The General Conference of Railway Managers support it. I have just had a communication from the National Chamber of Trade, who support it. The measure has also the support of five county councils, 746 city corporations and town and district councils, including great cities like Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Cardiff, Swansea, Dublin, and Belfast; the Company of Merchants of the City of Edinburgh, the Convention of Royal Burghs of Scotland, the Conference of the Urban District Councils of England and Wales, and eighty-eight chambers of commerce. The Associated Chambers of Commerce have passed resolutions in its favour for eight consecutive years. The measure also has the support of fifty-nine trade unions, forty-seven branches of the Shop Assistants' Union, and over 400 business, political, and other associations. The International Chambers of Commerce at Paris in 1914, representing thirty-one countries, and 642 organisations, also gave it their support. Public meetings of the citizens of London, the Lord Mayor presiding, have passed during these years resolutions in support of the measure. Members will have noticed the almost unanimous support of the Press during the past week. I have received a large number of letters, all, with one single exception, strongly in favour of it. Mrs. Illingworth tells me of one boarding-house which saved £7 last summer by adopting this plan. Another writer says:I am sure that if you are successful you will earn the gratitude of thousands who, like myself, are shut up in shop or office all day.I have a number of communications of that character. Here is one from a gentleman who says that he himself can alter 5,000 clocks simply by adjusting about 100 master clocks. Another correspondent says:With all my heart I wish yon success on Monday. To tens of thousands who, like myself, cannot leave business till 8 p.m. or later, an extra hour of daylight at the close of the day would prove to be a great privilege indeed, and would add years to our lives, to say nothing of financial gains that would accrue.This telegram was put into my hands this afternoon:Swansea and District Grocers' Association heartily support proposed Daylight Saving Bill, and trust same will be passed to-day.—WEST, President.309 Another telegram is:South Wales Council, representing 1,200 grocers, in favour of Daylight Saving Bill.—PERKINS, Secretary.A further telegram from Hull is as follows:National Chamber of Trade, in annual conference heartily and unanimously support Daylight Saving.—NICHOLSON, Secretary.There is one letter only which I desire to read in full to the House, as it appears to me one of the most instructive and weighty utterances I have seen on this subject. I have not the pleasure of knowing the writer personally. It is as follows:
§ "University Observatory,
§ Dear Sir Henry Norman,
§ A suggestion has reached me (from Professor A. M. Worthington, F.R.S.) that most of the objections urged by scientific men against 'Daylight Saving' would be met by the adoption of a new term 'Greenwich State Time' (G.S.T.), as distinguished from Greenwich Mean Time, or Civil Time (G.M.T. or G.C.T.), both of which have been used in other connections. I think the suggestion well worthy your consideration."
§ Here is a very important part of the letter:
§ "Astronomers as such (I have always contended) have little concern in the matter. Of the two hands of the clock the minute (and second) hand is very distinctly a concern of theirs, and it would be grievous to interfere with it; but the other hand belongs to the public and may be regulated to suit their convenience, as in the system of hourly changes in the United States.
§ It should always be remembered that meterologists will suffer, as it is important for them to have certain information collected at hours regulated by the sun himself. But they will have, at most, a little extra trouble, which ought not to outweigh the public convenience.
§ With good wishes,
§ Yours very truly,
§ H. H. TURNER. F.R.S.,
§ Savilian Professor of Astronomy."
§ 4.0 P.M.
I think after that letter, and I have a letter to the same effect from Professor Worthington, and remembering the support of Professor Rambaut and the late Sir Robert Ball, we need not trouble further over the so-called scientific objections. The situation as regards the advance of clock time in other countries is of importance. Unhappily our enemies have been quicker than ourselves to realise the great economy thus afforded. The advancement of clock time has been in operation in Germany, in Austria, and in Hungary since 1st May. It was stated in the discussions in the Bundesrath that an annual saving—and I am, of course, merely quoting the figures—of a sum approaching £8,000,000 would be made in Germany, and that a saving of a sum approaching £4,000,000 would be made in Austria. It would be equally amazing and regrettable if a measure of reform and economy born in this country and reborn in France
should profit only our enemies. As we have seen in the newspapers, daylight saving, or the advancement of clock time, as I prefer to call it, has been adopted in Holland and with the most striking success. Two letters on the subject have recently appeared in the Press. A correspondent of the "Daily News" writes:
Holland has adopted summer time. The Government has temporarily robbed us of an hour that nobody has missed, and has given everyone an hour's leisure that everyone has enjoyed. While some of you in England are discussing learnedly whether another hour's sunshine in your working day is good or bad for your vitality we, in Holland, are not bothering one whit about the theories, we are just enjoying the blessings and wondering why they were never realised before. The Dutch Parliament passed the Bill without debate; there will be a very big one if anyone tried to cancel it next year.
There was a most interesting letter to the same effect from the Rotterdam correspondent of the "Daily Telegraph." As regards France, the situation is that the Bill was passed by the Chamber of Deputies and went up to the Senate, which rose on the very day it was received and before the case for it could be stated there. I have, of course, no authority whatever to make any statement on this matter, but I have had the opportunity of discussing it frequently with those in France most influentially concerned, and I have not the slightest hesitation in expressing the confident opinion, and in fact regarding it to all intents and purposes as a certainty, that the French Government will adopt it if we do. In that case it is very probable, and I speak with some grounds, that it would be adopted also in Italy, where eminent men are also strongly urging it in the public Press—such men, for instance, as the President of the Society of Italian Civil Engineers. In that case Switzerland would certainly hardly fail to follow suit, as it would be surrounded by countries which had made this change. I venture specially to commend this Motion to the House, because upon the decision of the House to-day depends this great extension.
§ Nobody can speak of daylight saving on the eve, as I hope it may be, of its triumph, without a word of tribute to the memory of the late Mr. William Willett. It was he who originally conceived the idea. He gave years of his life and munificently of his means to the advocacy of it. He was wonderful in his seizure of every opportunity, great or small. No criticism daunted him, no defeat dismayed him. Apart from his own great business, he lived for daylight saving. I have never 311 known a more untiring, a more persistent, a more genial, a more disinterested advocate. Unhappily he is no longer with us, though his son, upon whom his mantle has not unworthily fallen, is listening to our Debate to-day. I venture to think that the time will come when the workers of this country will desire to erect to William Willett, in grateful memory, a statue on some peak where it will be gilded by the first rays of an April sunrise—one hour in advance of Greenwich Mean Time. I beg to move.
§ Mr. PETO
I beg to second the Motion. With no part of the very able speech in which this Motion has been moved do I find myself in more complete agreement than that in which the senior Member for Blackburn (Sir H. Norman) dealt with this matter as a war measure and as one deserving of immediate attention in view of the public economies involved. All the arguments against such a proposal which were relevant in times of peace have either disappeared entirely, gone over to the opposite side, or almost ceased to have any validity whatever. Although I am sure the House would not have missed a single word of the right hon. Gentleman's speech, we may well bear in mind that this Motion is to be the forerunrrer in all probability of an emergency Bill, and that the advantages of the proposal which is before the House have been so ably stated from the scientific and every other point of view that the House would be well advised, in view of the national emergency and of the date, 8th May, which is already some eighteen days later than that on which really this measure ought to have come into operation, to pass this Resolution with a very brief Debate. I am going to deal with the agricultural side of the question, but I feel sure I shall only need to do so very briefly. I should like first to refer to one or two of the arguments which were not perhaps fully covered in the speech we have just heard.
The right hon. Gentleman told us of some of the savings which would be effected. It may be of interest to know what the estimated savings will be in typical retail businesses, from which perhaps one can get an idea of the magnitude of the advantages in this essential commodity of light, which of course is the product of coal which we are bound to save. Messrs. Hitchcock and Williams, of St. Paul's Churchyard, estimate an annual saving of £347; Messrs. D. H. Evans, of 312 Oxford Street, £200 per year; and Harrods' Stores from £600 to £700 per year. Those are but three retail businesses in one city in this country, and those are the savings in coal, for that is what it comes to, which can be effected. I noticed that in the column next to the one in which the "Times" reported the letter of the Home Secretary which has been referred to, we find this Order from the Board of Trade, "Coal for lighting purposes must be reduced by 10 per cent." If we bear in mind that coal is the most important matter for us to economise in and that a vast proportion of the cost of the coal before it is ever turned into light is represented by the traffic charge over our railways, and that to do anything to relieve the congestion of the railways at this time is the most essential war measure which we possibly can adopt, then I really do not think that on general grounds there is any necessity for further argument. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Blackburn referred to the possibility of this meaning an extension of an hour at some of our works. I do not really believe there is any probability of such a result accruing in any industry whatever. Let the House just consider what the present conditions are. They are that all available labour, both male and female, in the vast majority of cases is concentrated upon work connected with the War. With that male and female labour alike the hours that are being worked are ungrudgingly the most that everyone can stand. What is proposed by this measure is to give an hour's additional daylight at the end of the working day so that there may be some time left to cultivate the allotments, the gardens in the vicinity of our towns, thus producing food right on the spot without cost of carriage and where it is most available for use in every household. That value alone as an agricultural measure is one well deserving of the consideration of the House.
I am aware that two of the strongest advocates of the interests of agriculture in this House, namely, the hon. Member for the Rye Division of Sussex (Captain Courthope) and the hon. Member for the Wilton Division of Wiltshire (Captain Bathurst) are absent from this Debate on account of military duties they have undertaken. I therefore took the opportunity, so that their views of the question should not be unpresented, to look up the speech the hon. Member for the Rye Division made in seconding 313 the Amendment for the rejection of the Bill in 1909. I find that the arguments which he relied upon are easily relegated into four categories. First of all he dealt with the question of milk, and said:All the big dairy associations say that they will find it absolutely impossible in the majority of cases to provide the towns with fresh milk nearer sunrise than at present. Of course, it would not really matter to us if the townspeople chose to drink last night's milk at breakfast, but it is quite clear, according to the definitely expressed view of daily farmers, that fresh milk cannot be supplied at an earlier hour."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 5th March, 1909, col. 1738, Vol. I.]I do not believe that the hon. Member if he were here to-day would put his argument in exactly the same form. He argued perfectly correctly with regard to the small towns all over the country, where it is possible to consume at breakfast milk that has been given by the cow that morning. But I took occasion this morning to see the managing director of a leading dairy company, so as to be able to inform the House what are the actual circumstances with regard to the delivery of milk in London. I found, as I had expected, that the bulk of the morning milk arrives in London at 10.30 or 11 o'clock. It has to be pasteurised and re-cooled, a short process not occupying more than about twenty minutes, and it leaves the dairy for the afternoon delivery between 12 and 1 o'clock. Some farmers now, owing to the shortage of labour and of horses, are delivering their milk only once a day—in the morning. The delivery of milk for breakfast goes out from the dairy at from 5.30 to 6.30, and that is the milk taken from the cow the evening before. Therefore there is no question of drinking stale milk, as the hon. Member called it, because that is what we do now. We do not get our milk at less than about twelve hours after it leaves the cow.
With regard to the farmer's difficulty, there are various matters connected with the milk question which are quite uninfluenced by the proposal before the House. One of the difficulties the farmer has is that the ordinary yield of milk by a cow is about as twelve to eight in the morning as compared with the afternoon. Therefore, if we should milk an hour earlier in the morning, and at the present hour of the clock in the afternoon, we should shorten the night and lengthen the day. That would tend to equalise the yield of milk, and produce a very distinct benefit. There are interesting questions connected with the butter fat; according to law it 314 must be above 3 per cent., and there is a great tendency in the Shorthorn breeds to run almost short of the 3 per cent, in the morning yield of milk. These questions are more suitable for a meeting of agriculturists, and I mention them now only because they are appropriate to the Bill for this reason: All these questions are quite unaffected by this proposed change. It might induce several changes which would be a positive advantage from the agricultural point of view, but it cannot possibly affect the farmers so far as any of the real problems of the milk trade are concerned. The hon. Member for Rye dealt also with the question of reaping and binding machines. He rather twitted my hon. Friend with the fact that he was not a farmer on a large scale who had to use these essential machines on a large farm. He went on to say:These machines are now used on a great number of farms, and anyone who has seen the machine used knows that it will not work unless the straw is dry, and it is the same with regard to grass.Immediately afterwards, the hon. Member destroyed that argument entirely by saying, with regard to harvesting operations:They cannot begin until the hay or straw is dry, and they work as long as there is light. It would be impossible for them to finish work relatively an hour later than all the rest of the community engaged in other pursuits."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 5th March, 1909, col. 1739, Vol. I.]The hon. Member recognised, as all agriculturists must do, that harvesting operations are conducted now by the sun, and not by the clock. Nobody imagines that a farmer goes forth, pulls his watch out of his fob, and says, "It is now ten o'clock in the morning. I must begin to cart the corn." He would not think of doing such a thing. He would go and feel some of the shocks, and say, "The dew is off this corn; I can now let the wagons start loading." That has always been the practice, and sound agriculture can be conducted on no other lines. It will not matter twopence whether the clock says one time or another. Indeed, the hon. Member for Rye went further, and said as an argument against the Bill:They (the agricultural labourers) take their time by the sun, and this Bill would take away their only timepiece.I could not follow his argument there, except in the case of an agricultural labourer who, living in the meridian of Greenwich, is in the habit of looking up and, when he sees the sun full over him, says, "It is now twelve o'clock" But if he happens to live a little way to the east of Penzance he will be twenty-three minutes 315 wrong now by Greenwich time. Therefore he cannot be in the habit of so accurately calculating his time by the exact position of the sun at noon. In any case, I am sure that he is sufficiently intelligent to be able to understand in a very little while that when the sun says eleven o'clock it is time to unhitch and take his lunch, instead of when the sun says twelve o'clock, as at present. The hon. Member for Rye also pointed out that in connection with many local live-stock markets you have to drive the stock a good many miles to reach the market. That means starting as soon as it is light, and the hon. Member said that you could not, without grave inconvenience, start earlier. What does that involve? At the very worst those who control the local market would have to say, "In view of the fact that the Government have altered the time, we think that the market, instead of starting at twelve, or one o'clock, or whatever it may be, had better start an hour later by the clock." That would not be a very serious alteration, especially bearing in mind that the agricultural population, important as they are, particularly in wartime, are only about 8 per cent, as compared with all the town-dwellers in the country. Really we cannot allow an argument of that sort to outweigh this enormous national advantage.
I should like to say a word upon the "Do it yourself" argument. In the Debate in 1909 the hon. Member for the Tradeston Division of Glasgow (Mr. Dundas White) was very strong on this point, and referred to the case of Messrs. Crosfield of Warrington who had done it for themselves. He quoted what Messrs. Crosfield wrote as to the great advantage that had accrued to the firm from altering the clock by half an hour, and he said:That is open to every other firm and every other employer to do. If they wish to encourage earlier rising in that way it can be done voluntarily. It needs no compulsion."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 5th March, 1909, col. 1754, Vol. I.]Unfortunately for that argument, and fortunately for the proposal that I am seconding, this particular firm, finding the half hour was a good thing, tried to extend it to the one hour as proposed by this Resolution, and Mr. Willett quotes their experience. He says:I adduce the experience of Messrs. Joseph Crosfield and Sons, Limited, of Warrington, who state that having opened and closed their offices half an hour earlier and finding that the change had benefited the health of their staff, and that the work done showed an improvement, they considered the possibility of making a further altera- 316 tion in the same direction, but found that owing: to difficulties in regard to dinner-hour and train service it was impossible.That is one more of those arguments which have been used in one direction and now tell in exactly the opposite direction. It shows that the Mover of the Resolution is absolutely right in saying that it is quite impossible in this matter to do anything unless we all act together. As Mr. Willett says in his memorandum:It is futile to say that these advantages can be secured by early rising. The exceptional exercise of this virtue usually calls forth more sarcasm than admiration or imitation. Leisure must follow, not precede, work, and earlier business hours are quite unattainable. The success of the proposed change entirely depends upon its initiation by legislative action.If that be true with regard to an ordinary peace time measure, it must be true in war. Even if there are some slight inconveniences which may be experienced by a small section of the community in adjusting themselves to something which is for the general good, for the public economy, and for the better conduct of the War, surely they are a very small matter compared with the great question involved in this proposal—the question of adopting; the change initiated in this country by Mr. Willett's ingenuity and foresight, and which has been already adopted by the enemies to whom we are opposed. I do not think it is very creditable to this country that long after Mr. Willett's proposal was put before the country here he took steps to bring it forward in Germany, and they so rapidly took it up there, that when it is a question of war, a question of life and death, when it is important to save every pound, Germany has had the start of us, and this Resolution can now be best argued in this House as being something which the enemy have already adopted. I am sorry that it is so. Some of us called the attention of the Government to the matter when there was still time to have made the whole saving possible in the year. On the 17th February I asked the Prime Minister whether he could see his way to move in this matter, and he said that he could not introduce legislation on "this contentious subject." I close with that. I only hope that the result of this Debate will be to show that we might have adopted this change before, and not after, our enemies; that it is not contentious; and that the Government will argue, as I believe the Home Secretary will do, that it is for the good of the country and for the better prosecution of the War that the proposal should be adopted.
§ Sir FREDERICK BANBURY
The hon. Baronet who moved this Motion spent the first part of his interesting speech in giving us a scientific lecture. I do not propose to follow him on those lines. He told us, I think, that the earth wobbled on its axis, and that owing to that wobbling a certain alteration in time took place. That may or may not be so. I am prepared to accept the statement of the hon. Baronet, but I do not think that that has really anything whatever to do with the question now before us. As my hon. Friend (Mr. Peto) admitted, this is an extremely contentious and controversial subject, and I think it ought not to be brought on at a time like the present unless strong reasons can be adduced that the passing of the Resolution will do something to accelerate the War, and aid our country in carrying on that war. I therefore propose to deal only with the practical considerations which were stated by the hon. Baronet who introduced the Resolution. Before dealing with them I would like to say one or two words in regard to the agricultural position which was not dealt with by the hon. Baronet, who left it to my hon. Friend below the Gangway. In my view this alteration would deal a very serious blow to the farmers.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
And it would do so at a time when it is very difficult for farmers to carry on their work and to obtain the necessary labour to get their work done. Let me first state the case of the dairy farmers and explain the question as it exists at the present moment in my own county of Wiltshire. The hon. Member (Mr. Peto) represents one of the Divisions. In my part of Wiltshire, a large part of which is considerably concerned in dairy farming, the milkers commence at five o'clock in the morning. This means getting up at half-past four. It cannot be doubted that getting up all the year round at half-past four is an arduous and hard task. For the greater part of the year these men get up in the dark. That is not a very pleasant thing to do. But during the summer, or at any rate during a greater part of the summer, they have the advantage of getting up more or less in the light. My hon. Friend below the Gangway and the hon. Baronet say, "Oh, no, you are not to do that; you are to get up practically all the year round in the dark." [An 318 HON. MEMBER: "NO!"] I beg pardon. They will have to get up at three-thirty instead of half-past four, and start milking at four o'clock instead of five. In our part of the world this has really nothing to do with the delivery of the morning milk for consumers to drink, because-the greater part of our milk comes to London, or goes to some other towns, though some of it goes to Slough. You: could not get up later or begin milking-later than five or you would not catch the train. You are going to put the trains an hour earlier, and, therefore, these men will have to get up an hour earlier to do their milking. But you cannot alter the milk trade or the allied trades, and the result will be that these people will have to get up in the dark all the year round instead of in the dark only a portion of the year.
We come next to the question of the harvest. As everyone knows, after you have cut your grass, you cannot carry your hay when the dew is on it. At the present moment, if you are farming a mixed farm, as I am farming one myself—I do not do any milk except for my own house and the rearing of calves—it is very difficult to know on a damp morning in the hay harvest what to do with the men before the dew is off the grass. You will have another hour in which the men can do nothing. You may by an Act of Parliament alter the clock, but you cannot alter nature, and the dew will not go off an hour sooner because you have altered your clocks. It will remain on just the same, and there will be an hour wasted, an hour which has to be paid for by the farmer. It is quite true that in harvest time overtime is worked. I would point out to the hon. Baronet that the men, having got up an hour earlier than usual, and having done nothing, something may be given them to do, at five or four o'clock, when they leave off work, when they will be more tired than if they had got up later. An hour in the evening will be lost. Anybody conversant at all with agriculture knows that this is especially the time for carrying the hay. The work will be done by tired men. They will not be able to put as much energy into their work as they would have done if they had got up an hour later. The same applies to the corn harvest, with the possible exception of wheat. My hon. Friend behind me (Sir J. Spear) is thoroughly conversant with agriculture, and I think he will bear me out when I say, 319 though you cannot carry oats and barley if they are wet, it does not so much matter for wheat, even if it is a little damp, if you are not going to thresh it immediately. Both barley and oats, however, have to be carried when dry, and you cannot use the binder for either wheat, barley, or oats when the straw is wet. Therefore, again during the corn harvest, the same objection will apply that I have just mentioned in regard to the hay harvest. From the point of view of the farmer, nothing could be worse than this particular measure, and that at a time when it is extremely difficult to obtain labour. It is not easy now to get milkers on account of the hard life. If you are going to make it harder by making them get up in the dark all the year round the result will be that the farmers will find that it will be more difficult than before to obtain the labour they need.
What was the argument brought forward by the hon. Baronet in justification of his statement that money was going to be saved by this measure. He said that there would not be so much artificial light used, and then, almost in the same breath, he went on to use the argument which was advanced in the old days, that there would be an hour extra for amusements. If you have an hour extra for amusements it means you go to bed at the same time as now, and therefore you will have to burn just as much artificial light as now. [An HON. MEMBER: "NO!"] Certainly; you get up an hour earlier, and if you go to bed at the same time you save an hour's artificial light, but you would not have the extra hour for amusements, and if you have the extra hour for amusements then you will have to go to bed later.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
My hon. Friend says "No!" I do not agree with him. I think he will find that people will not go to bed in the light. As a matter of fact, the only result will be that people will, I presume, get up earlier if this Resolution is passed, and that they will not go to bed any earlier at all. I am only now talking about private people—private in the sense that they are private after they have finished their work. When, however, you come to deal with industries, banks, shops, and so on, in the summer, they are all closed now before eight o'clock. There will be no saving for them. If you go further to 320 manufactories, undertakings of that sort, and large works, which work double shifts, they will go on working two shifts as before. Munition works will go on working at night, and all these will use just as much light as they do now. I forget whether it was my hon. Friend below the Gangway or the hon. Baronet who said that Harrods, I think it was, or some particular store, reckoned that they would save £300.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
Well, Harrods, so far as I know, close now at six o'clock, and how can they save if they close in the summer at six? The question of railways has been alluded to. I made some inquiries on Thursday from the office of the Great Northern Railway, of which I am a director. I asked our general manager what really had taken place. The railways at the present time have an executive consisting of eight general managers, and the general manager of the Great Northern Railway is one of those eight. We had heard nothing of this at the board, and I inquired what really had taken place. According to the statement of the general manager, all that has taken place has been that the eight general managers have stated that, under present circumstances, they would not be affected one way or the other by this proposal. That is the information given to me last Thursday. The general manager tells me they have expressed no opinion as a body—I do not know what individuals may have said—upon the merits of the proposed scheme. All they have said is that, so far as they are concerned, they do not think they will be injured by this particular measure.
§ Mr. PETO
I do not know whether the right hon. Baronet wanted an answer to the question he put to me a moment ago as to how Messrs Harrods would save if they closed now at six or seven. The reply is that the work of a great store does not end when the shutters go up, any more than does the work of a bank after the public are shut out.
§ Sir H. NORMAN
The right hon. Baronet refers to the testimony of the managing director of Harrods store. I beg to put it in a few lines before him.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
I am extremely obliged to the hon. Baronet, but what I read on the Paper he has given me bears out what I said. A change is advocated, 321 not because it is going to save any money, but because it is going to give additional recreation to certain people. That is the argument which was used by the late Mr. Lyttelton. I remember I had a conversation with him upon this subject when I was sitting on the bench behind and he was sitting on this Front Bench. He had given me a promise to vote against the proposal when it was introduced on a previous occasion. Suddenly someone said, "Oh, a place like Harrods will be closed an hour earlier and there will be an hour extra of daylight in which the shop assistants can go and play cricket." Whereupon Mr. Lyttelton turned to me and said, "I am sorry, my dear fellow, but if they are going to be able to play cricket I must vote against you." And he did That, actually, in other words, is what the director of Harrods stores says:They are not able on summer evenings to make use of the fourteen-acre recreation ground placed at their disposal; in fact, it is only on Saturday afternoons they can do so. If they could get an hour added daily to that which they now enjoy, there is hardly one evening in the week in summer in which they would not get sufficient time to take advantage of the athletic club and grounds.What about the lighting of the athletic club and ground? If the assistants stayed after their play to have tea or other refreshments or to discuss matters with their friends? This may be a very excellent reason for endeavouring to give extra recreation, but I venture to say there is nothing in it showing that there will be any saving whatever to Harrods store, or of any other similar business which closes at six o'clock or even later in the evening.
There is another point with regard to agriculture. At the present moment agricultural labourers have their dinner between twelve and one, and that is the warmest time of the day; therefore, during the greatest heat of the day they are able to have a rest and go to their own cottages, if the work is near, or to sit under a shady tree and have their dinner. Now, you are going to make for the future the hottest hour of the day as the hour in which they are to work. I do not think that is an advantage either for horses or for men. There was an extremely interesting letter in the "Times" a day or two ago from Mr. Arthur Hinks, in which he pointed out:If we are to be dishonest with the clock, let us at any rate make the change honestly. The advocates of daylight saving are adept in securing the consent of one body of opinion on the ground that some other body has adopted it with enthusiasm. Public opinion in Paris has just lately been misled by the false statement that Canada and 322 Australia have already made the change. We are told, in our turn, that the French have adopted it; whereas, in fact, it is still under examination by a Committee of the Senate, who are expected to reject it. The change to standard time at the Cape years ago was hailed as a beneficial application of the principle with which it had nothing whatever to do; and any attempt to begin work earlier in the day is acclaimed as a justification, not as a refutation, of the need of tampering with the clock, a childish expedient in time of peace, as it seems to many of us, and a very dangerous thing to do in war, when a mistake of an hour might be fatal.It is very difficult, of course, to tell exactly what effect a change of this sort would have, but I do not believe myself that it would save any appreciable amount of money or appreciable amount of coal. I believe that you cannot change the habits of the people. I believe that the real reason for the introduction of this Motion is, and I claim that the whole speech of the hon. Baronet was devoted to showing, that an extra hour would be gained for recreation. I am not sure that we ought to think so much about recreation at the present moment. We have got to deal with a very serious situation, and we should turn our minds and thoughts to dealing with that, and not try to take advantage of it to gain extra hours of recreation. It may be all right in times of peace, but it is not what is wanted now, and while we might possibly gain a little in enabling certain people to play cricket, or to amuse themselves—in all probability they will not play cricket, but will smoke, or do something of that sort which wilt injure them—I see no argument brought forward which convinces me, or, so far as I can see, convinces anybody, that there is going to be a saving in money, which, after all, is the chief thing at the present moment. I venture to submit that, unless it can be shown there is going to be an appreciable saving of money, we ought not now in time of war to bring forward what is a very controversial measure, and endeavour to juggle with the hands of the clock. Might I ask the right hon. Gentleman, supposing I do not put my watch back, what is going to happen?
§ The SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. Herbert Samuel)
You will miss your train.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
Supposing I do not want to go by train, is there to be any penalty for not altering your clock or watch, or is it at all likely that ordinary people—and, after all, the world is composed chiefly of ordinary people—are going to alter all their habits merely because a 323 certain number of people, honestly, no doubt, have taken up this faddish idea, as I think, and desire it should be done? Parliament can do all sorts of things, but why should Parliament interfere with the private life of the people? If in the past they had given less time to all these grandmotherly ideas and grandmotherly legislation, and had taken a little more trouble to see what was being done abroad, and what Germany and our other enemies were doing, we should be in a very much better position to-day. That is one reason why I object so very much to this Bill. Before the War we were always told we ought to do this or that, because the Germans had done it. I think if the Germans have done it, it is a very good reason why we should not do it. I myself do not want to have anything more to do with Germany in any way at all, and I think it is a very excellent reason, if true that the Germans have done it, that we should not do it ourselves. When I was told, that this old controversial measure was going to be brought forward again and the Government give an extra day for it, I could hardly believe my senses. I do not know whether the hon. Member for East Herts (Mr. Billing) is in the House, but he has been trying, and I have been trying, to get a day for the Air Service Debate, which was promised as soon as the financial business of the year had been closed. The financial business of the year closed on 4th April. We have not had the Debate, and we are being delayed to discuss whether or not some people who would like to get up an hour earlier in the morning are to compel everyone else to do the same thing. That seems to be childish. If I want to get up earlier I shall get up earlier without asking the right hon. Gentleman opposite to do the same, and if the right hon. Gentleman wants to get up earlier I shall be very pleased if he will do so, but I trust he will leave me to get up at what time I like. Under those circumstances, I earnestly trust the House will reject this Motion.
§ Mr. TIMOTHY DAVIES
I have listened with interest to the speech of the right hon. Baronet who has just sat down, and I think if he went into the merits of the Bill he would come to the conclusion that it would be a very good thing even from his point of view. With regard to the advantages of playing cricket in the light, there is no doubt a great value in that, but the right hon. Baronet did not 324 think it would be a good thing to smoke. Well, we can smoke in the dark as well as we can in the light. [HON. MEMBERS: "No!"]
§ Mr. DAVIES
I am sorry I trespassed on the smoking question because I do not indulge in smoking. The right hon. Baronet particularly wished to know if there was any saving in this Bill. I can assure him there will be a great saving. It is unfortunate, I think, that the Seconder of the Motion quoted certain houses which will benefit possibly the least by this Bill. Scores and hundreds of retail houses in London could be quoted which do not close until half-past eight at night, and, therefore, in each of those houses there will be a clear saving of an hour's lighting every night, which will amount to tens of thousands of pounds in the saving of light in their case alone. Therefore, I can assure the right hon. Baronet that there will be an actual saving of cash in this to the retailers, especially of London, and it is quite true, as the hon. Member for Devizes (Mr. Peto) said, that the shops, like the banks, when they close do not finish their work. Even large houses like Harrods are working in their packing rooms underground, where they have to use artificial light, and if they finish an hour earlier it will be a consideration. With regard to the argument from the agricultural point of view, as far as I am aware, representing an agricultural Constituency, there is no real objection. As to the objection which the right hon. Baronet has given with regard to sending milk to London from Wiltshire, it has already been shown that the milk from Wiltshire is not given to him for his tea that morning, but it is probably either the afternoon or the following morning that he gets it. I can assure him the milk which is milked at four or five o'clock in the morning in Wiltshire is not used for breakfast the same morning.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
But it has got to go; it does not matter who uses it. If you make this alteration, the milk will still have to go at the earlier hour. You have got to milk the cow just the same.
§ Mr. DAVIES
Is the right hon. Baronet aware what time the sun rises at this period of the year? If he had got up this 325 morning at half-past three he would have found it was not quite dark, and for at least three of the six months during which this Bill is in force milkers will find it is light. With regard to altering the habits of the people, I admit that if this Bill was for the altering of the clock for the whole of the year we would not realise the benefit; possibly the benefit would not result after the first year. But, having every year to put back the clock at a certain time when we get most daylight, it will become a habit, and I can assure the right hon. Baronet that it will be a benefit to a great many people. As one who has bad to work for many years by artificial light, and on behalf of many hundreds of thousands of men and women who are now working by artificial light in summer time, I say it will be a great boon to those to get out and obtain a, little sunshine after eight o'clock, and to get an hour extra in the parks, even if they do not play cricket. I think this House ought to adopt this Resolution unanimously, and I do not know of any objection. Even if the Central Powers have adopted a Resolution similar to this, in a case like this I am only too glad to follow them if it is benefiting our people. What we ought not to follow the Germans in is in things not of benefit to the people, but the other way. The case is so strong for this Resolution that it does not require much supporting, if each one will consider the question for himself. I can assure the right hon. Baronet my own lighting bill would be reduced by at least 15 per cent, if this Bill were passed, and that is a consideration. I will tell the House what it would do in my own case. It would enable me to spare for five months an experienced engineer entirely for the services of the State in making munitions if this Motion is passed. That is not the only saving for me and for many others in the retail business in London and elsewhere. There would be a saving of hundreds of thousands of pounds in this trade in London.
§ 5.0 P.M.
§ Mr. LAURENCE HARDY
I confess I was rather surprised last week to find that this measure, which had been shelved for some time, was going to be revived today in this extremely active form. After all, the speeches we heard at the beginning of this discussion certainly did not give a clear view to the House of the attitude that has been taken on this question in past years. Some years ago we had this matter brought before us, and if 326 we go back to the time when the House gave some attention to this matter, I would remind hon. Members that the authorities in the House took a somewhat unusual action in connection with this subject. A Select Committee was appointed to consider the question, and afterwards another Select Committee was appointed which had the full advantage of the inquiry held by the first Committee, and heard further evidence, and even after that the second Select Committee declined to act, as they considered the matter was too controversial. The opinion of that Select Committee has not been seriously challenged up to this date, and if that is so, surely it is curious that a matter which was abandoned on the ground that it was contentious should be brought forward now and recommended as something upon which there is unanimity. So far as the past history of this matter is concerned, it is clear that this is a matter which should not have been brought before the House at the present time.
Of course, we are all willing to listen to arguments, and if this measure is to be recommended by the Government as a matter essential for carrying on the War, then we give up our private opinion and go with the Government in taking any action which in any way will help the country in connection with the War. Therefore, when the Home Secretary rises to speak, I hope he will really give his attention to that aspect of the question. I should also like to know how far the Admiralty are in favour of this measure. I do not think they are often quoted amongst the authorities in favour of this proposal, and I believe there are very considerable difficulties in altering the clock in connection with a good many naval matters. After all, the sea is our chief concern, and it is very important that we should know exactly the opinion of the Admiralty on this question. With regard to the receiving of news, this question may be very important, and the pushing forward of the time will make the matter more difficult. No doubt we shall all suffer in regard to what we read every morning in the newspapers, but I agree that we cannot put that forward as a very serious matter if more serious arguments are brought forward. I desire to contest the opinion that has been given by my hon. Friend below the Gangway (Mr. Peto) in connection with agricultural questions in reference to this subject. 327 So far as agriculture is concerned the case was very clearly put by witnesses before the two Select Committees, and the evidence shows that there are very serious objections from the agricultural point of view. The case of London has been quoted as if it were the only one with which we are concerned, but there are a vast number of consumers who do get their early morning milk, and that will become almost impossible if this proposal is passed into law.
There are many objections to pushing forward the carrying on of agriculture into the earlier hours of the day. The very best experts on the question, with only one exception, were all unanimous in connection with the disadvantages of this proposal as applied to agriculture, and under the present circumstances, I think, agriculture has a very strong claim. It must be, remembered that what we are proposing to do at the present moment is to endeavour to persuade those engaged in agriculture to employ female instead of male labour. There are very considerable objections to forcing female labour into the field at such very early hours, because females have their duties at home, and at the present moment it is very difficult for them to carry out those duties before they go to work in the fields, and it will make it more difficult for them if you put this additional pressure upon agriculture, and that fact ought to be taken into consideration. My hon. Friend seems to think this is a very easy matter, and he said that local markets would not want to meet an hour earlier by having the clock put back, but by doing that you would arrive at the same thing. It seems to me that that was not a very strong argument. In reference to the binders, if the corn is wet, the hon. Member says that the men may wait in the field. At the present time they have to wait, and these are not times when you ought to allow labour to wait, because you want to make use of it in every way, and if you are always to be finding odd jobs for the men before they can get to their real work it is the very worst way of doing business and most wasteful.
In view of the shortage of labour in agriculture the difficulties will be increased under this proposal more and more, and it is on those grounds that I ask the House to consider whether it is advisable to pursue a contentious subject of this sort 328 at the present time. At any rate, we ought to be absolutely convinced that it is a war measure and that all our great Departments of State are in favour of it, especially the Admiralty. As this proposal, is limited in the Resolution to one year, we ought to be shown very clearly where the actual saving does arise. I confess I was not satisfied with the arguments used in connection with Harrods Stores, because early closing is in operation, and I do not see what light would be saved in connection with those stores. I also think that we ought to be very careful not to make this change unless we are quite sure that our neighbour, France, is going to do the same thing. If we act in this matter, at all events let us act together, because I think it would be very inconvenient if there was a different time in this country to that adopted by our Allies, when we are carrying on so many mutual actions together. I ask the Home Secretary to give his very serious consideration to this matter, and to state to the House most clearly the grounds upon which the Government regard this as a war measure.
Mr. DUNDAS WHITE
Like the right hon. Gentleman who has just spoken, I was a little surprised to find that this measure should have been put forward at such short notice and apparently with the force of the Government behind it, because I assume that when the Home Secretary wrote that letter he did so as representing the Cabinet. I should like to have a much clearer statement as to what is actually intended by the promoters of this change. My hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Sir H. Norman) gave an interesting description of the various times; but there is no question about this point, that the time we contemplate throughout is solar mean time, and the only question is whether that should be Greenwich mean time or one hour before Greenwich mean time. I would like to point out that our present time standards rest upon a purely voluntary basis. It seems necessary to point out that difference, because this is the first time that a proposal has been made to apply direct or indirect compulsion. The question of how much compulsion may have to be applied is a point I propose to deal with, and on this point I would like to raise the question of convenience. As hon. Members know, in the olden days time was kept in various parts of the country by sun dials and the various local times varied. A difficulty arose owing to the railway system and it 329 became necessary to have some standard of time which came to be known at various places as railway time. Then differences arose with reference to the local time and railway time, and in 1880 this House passed the Statutes (Definition of Time) Act, not to enforce any time, but it was expressly an Act to remove doubts concerning the meanings of expressions and to provide two things. The first thing it provided was that where any reference occurs in Acts of Parliament, deeds and other legal instruments to the time, the time shall, unless otherwise specifically stated, be, in Great Britain, Greenwich mean time, and in the case of Ireland, Dublin mean time. The second Section gives the name of the Act, and that is the statutory basis of the present arrangement. It was purely an Act to avoid any doubt as to the meaning of time in Acts of Parliament and other documents, and by reasons of convenience alone Greenwich mean time has become general. In regard to Dublin, I agree with a letter from Lord Inver-clyde which appears in to-day's "Times," in which he says that he thinks it would be an advantage if Greenwich mean time could be adopted throughout Ireland as well as throughout England and Scotland. Greenwich mean time has been adopted not only in France, but in Spain and Portugal, which are as far away as Ireland. I would not dream of making a proposal of this kind for Ireland myself, because I think it ought to come from the Irish Members, but it would be a very considerable convenience if Greenwich mean time was used throughout the British Isles. Greenwich mean time is not only the basis for the countries I have mentioned, but it is really the basis of time throughout the world. The various cities of the world used to have their own time, but they have now adapted their time to Greenwich mean time by a system of time zones. Going eastward, for instance, mid-European time is one hour earlier, in East Europe two hours earlier, while Mauritius time is four hours earlier, Calcutta six, and Japan nine. Going westward, Atlantic time is four hours later, Eastern five hours, Central six, Mountain seven, and Pacific time eight hours later, and so on in this way until extremes meet at the Antipodes. I mention these things as showing that Greenwich mean time is not the standard for ourselves only, and I might also state that our telegraphic business proceeds on those lines. The adoption of those zones rests not on compul- 330 sion, but as a matter of general convenience it has been found to be the most convenient arrangement. Sometimes an attempt has been made to shift local time, as, for instance, in the City of Nelson, British Columbia, but they have found it inconvenient and have gone back again. It is simply a question of convenience all through, and as a question of convenience this has gradually come about. I am sure there is no desire to risk unnecessary divisions in this House, and in view of the position which the Government has taken up I do not think opposition to the proposal has very much hope, but I do think the difficulty should be fairly stated, and I want to put before the House some of the very serious difficulties which do exist. Those who do not think that this measure would be effective are not opposed to the greater use of daylight. We desire to see daylight better used and hours made more natural. The only question is whether this is an effective way of doing it. The letter of the Home Secretary, if he will allow me to say so, put things very clearly, and the House is probably aware of the key sentence in it. After speaking of the difficulty of practising virtue individually, he says:Except in rare instances, no business or professional man, still less a working man, can alter the hours of his daily routine unless those with whom he is associated simultaneously do the same. Were he to attempt it he would find himself in a world by himself. Railways, posts, work-times, meal-times, recreations—nothing would fit. In our civilisation we are all so closely united with one another that, in a matter of this kind, we must either move together as one piece or not move at all.That is the argument; we cannot do it individually, and therefore, says my right hon. Friend, we must all move as one piece. I would like to remind hon. Members that there is a middle course. A great deal can be done, and a great deal has been done, by voluntary co-operation. I would like to join in the tribute which has been paid to the enthusiasm and disinterestedness of the late Mr. William Willett. His proposal certainly made people realise the advantage of having more convenient hours of rising, and it has already borne very considerable fruit in that direction. My hon. Friend the Member for the Devizes Division (Mr. Peto) quoted an instance to which I referred in this House some years ago, and said that although that firm had been able to expedite their operations by half an hour, they had not been able to expedite them, by one hour, owing to surrounding circumstances. The Select Committee of 1909, of which I had the honour to be a 331 member, had evidence before it that something like 1,000 firms had succeeded in doing this and doing it effectively. Various recommendations then made were considered very fully, and we may safely say that thousands of firms have already done this. It has extended to Government Departments as well. I believe the first Government Department to adopt it was the Scottish Education Department in 1910. It was proposed that those employed there should come an hour earlier and get away an hour earlier if they preferred it. The great majority said that it was very desirable and they fell in with the proposal. That is an example of the way in which it has been done by Government Departments. I believe that a very great deal more can be done on these lines, without any alteration of the hands of the clock, to persuade people to give a trial to earlier hours where and when they can be worked.
Perhaps I might make a suggestion, which I put forward in a question some time back. Advertising has been largely used to urge us to save money, to economise in dress and other ways, and for many purposes, and it might be well for the Government to advertise that this should also be done wherever it can be effectively done in the interests of the country. This Resolution proposes that the clock should be put on one hour, but we do not know what measure of compulsion, or whether any measure of compulsion at all, is to be applied. The whole basis of the proposal is that if the hands of the clock are altered the whole community will move all their operations one hour forward, and will move as one piece, to use my right hon. Friend's words. If the community does not do that, then the result will be trouble all round and confusion worse confounded, because we shall not know where we stand. If this change is partial it will probably do more harm than good. I would, therefore, put this question to the House: Is there any reason to believe that the whole community will move forward as one piece? There are certain instances which lead us to think that the whole community will not be able to move forward as one piece. The whole idea has arisen among those whose hours are not quite so well suited to nature as they might be, and the places in which the change could be made are very con- 332 siderably limited, mostly to town life and businesses, offices, and various other institutions.
I doubt very much whether the change is practicable as regards agriculture, and it must be remembered that we have about 2,000,000 agricultural workers in this country. It will be common ground among all those who know anything about agriculture that, as my hon. Friend the Member for the Devizes Division says, agricultural operations are conducted not by the clock, but by the sun. I remember one witness, who gave evidence before the Select Committee, saying that in the strawberry season the pickers waited, basket in hand, until there was light enough to pick. I agree that may be an extreme case, but they certainly could not begin any earlier. I very much doubt whether the cowmen could begin earlier. They often begin, as the right hon. Baronet the Member for the City of London (Sir F. Banbury) said, about five o'clock. That means they have to rise about four. Under this proposal they would begin at what is now four o'clock, and rise about three o'clock. I wonder whether that would be for the benefit of their health, or whether it would not add to the arduousness of their labour. I would also like to know what the effect would be upon the animal itself. It does not necessarily follow, if a cow will milk well at one hour, that it will milk equally well at another hour. I have not the agricultural experience to speak about this, but the hon. Member for the Devizes Division might have dealt with that physiological side of the question. Hon. Members have already said that you could not begin weeding until the dew is off, and that it spoils crops to cut them wet. Automatic reapers and binders will not work. If these people got up an hour earlier it is said that they might do something else, but broken time to a great extent is wasted time. Agricultural operations, broadly speaking, cannot start much earlier than they do now, and, assuming the statement of the hon. Member for the Devizes Division to be that they will still go by the sun, they will begin an hour later, according to the clock, than they do now.
It does not only affect agricultural workers. There are smiths, farriers, joiners, and many in other trades which are dependent upon agriculture, and that which applies to agriculture also applies to them. My hon. Friend spoke of the market, and said it would suit itself to the conditions. He said that if the 333 clock is put on the market will be put back for an hour. It will have to be; but that is an instance which shows that it is not so simple as the Home Secretary assumed. The market will not move forward with the rest of the community; it will stick at the hour at which it is now. The time of the market controls the time of various trains that suit the market, and these trains will also have to run at the same times as they do now. It will therefore be very difficult to work, because the considerations which apply to agriculture would have great weight. Then there is the case of industrial workers. Take the case of workers in shipbuilding yards and factories, textile and others. These people probably number about 3,000,000, and in the great bulk of cases they start work at 6.30 or 6. That means that they rise at 5.30 or 5 in order to dress, to have something to eat, and to find their way to their work. If they follow the example of the markets and go back an hour, then the proposal will have no effect upon them. If they, to use the Home Secretary's phrase, move forward as one piece, what will be the result? They will have to start work at 5.30 or 5 and they will have to get up at 4.30 or 4. Will that be good for their health?
I might remind the House of certain important features in human physiology. Human life is at its lowest in the early hours of the morning; probably a couple of hours after midnight. Vitality is not so high at 3.30 as at 4.30, or at 4.30 as at 5.30, and I am very much afraid if these people have to go to work an hour earlier, taking the sun standard, it will have a considerable effect on their vitality and will seriously impair the efficiency of their work. It is quite possible if this proposal became law that there are millions of workers in shipbuilding yards and factories who would say, "We would like to go back to the old hours." If they did so, the workmen's trains which bring them to their work, would be thrown out of gear, and they would not move forward as one piece. Take another important class of workers—the munition workers. The Minister of Munitions, speaking on Saturday, gave the number of these workers at 1,900,000. These are all new established factories. Would it not be the simplest thing in the world for the Minister of Munitions to approach the workers in every one of the controlled establishments and put to them this question: "Are you 334 willing to begin your duty an hour earlier?" There would surely be no difficulty in doing that. I wonder if the Minister of Munitions, or any other Government official, has taken the trouble to put that question to them. Has it been considered whether changing the hands of the clock will make them do it?
There seems to be a general idea that if you only alter the hands of the clock people will get up an hour earlier without knowing it. That, I believe, to be a totally mistaken view. It may have that effect in the case of the wealthier classes, but I believe the hours at which the great bulk of the people do their work have their foundations in, and are based on, reasons far more deeply rooted than those who are proposing this measure seem to think. I would like to have an answer to this question: What is going to happen if the people do not all move forward together? Take the case of girls working in shops. In many cases they have to begin duty at 8 or 8.30. That means rising at 7 or 7.30, or even earlier when they have a long way to travel. Will they not suffer in their health by having to start what is really an hour sooner? I do not express any opinion on that point, but I put it is a matter which ought certainly to be taken into consideration before this measure is adopted. I believe wealthier people might rise a great deal earlier; but we must remember there are many employed in domestic service, particularly in frugal households, who have to rise at a very early hour. Many of us have had to pass along the London streets at all hours of the night and early morning and I for one have been impressed by the early hours which a great many of these workers keep—the early hours, for instance, at which day-girls and step-girls begin their duties. I venture to suggest that this change might operate prejudicially upon their health.
I would ask if the, question of street conveyances has been considered. We have heard of a conference with the railway-men; but it is not very clear what passed on that occasion. I would like to know what was the question put to the railway-men. Was it this: "Assume if the hours are changed, and the community alter their habits, can the trains be run to suit the new arrangement?" If that was the question put to them, I can quite understand the answer being in the affirmative. But is that assumption correct? It is an assumption which has been made by 335 various advocates of the Bill, but it does not seem to me it is well founded. We cannot be so sure that, if all the clocks are changed in this way, the people will in fact change their habits. That is a point to which I would invite the Home Secretary to direct his attention when he speaks, because unless the point is well made it does not seem to me that the case for the Bill is made out. I know that the railway companies are very powerful, and that individuals are told that they must suit their time to the time of the trains, but it must not be forgotten that the times of the trains are calculated to suit the convenience of the bulk of individuals. And on that particular point Mr. Willett, when before the Select Committee, speaking of the railway companies and the new system, saidTheir mill would grind everybody very small who did not fall in with it.I venture to think, however, that in arranging their time service the railway companies would be compelled to have some regard to public convenience, especially in the matter of the running of market trains. They would have to run those trains to suit the convenience of the people as a whole. There is another point to be borne in mind. We have a Cheap Trains Act, and under that Act cheap trains are run up to 7 a.m. Greenwich mean time. If this proposal is carried, the benefits of the Cheap Trains Act will cease to be available after 6 a.m., and as a result workers who stick to their present time would suffer serious disadvantage. Again, in many Statutes hours are fixed. The Home Secretary knows well that in the Factory Acts, in the Shops Act, and in various other Acts, there is reference to specific times. Are these times to be kept, or will they also require to be altered? Is it proposed that they shall run concurrently with the summer season times?
I thoroughly agree with those who are pressing this Bill forward that it is easier to make the change in war time, because of the dislocation of our trade arrangements. Our trade with America just now is no doubt less, and that with the Central Empires is of course non-existent. A good deal has been made of the fact that Austria and Germany have adopted this change as and from the 1st of May. It has been referred to as a daylight saving measure. What have we in these Central Empires? We have four important States, Germany, Austria, Turkey, and Bulgaria, and they are all working together. In 336 Germany and Austria Central European time is taken; in Bulgaria and Turkey they have Eastern European time. But they naturally find that for warlike operations a uniform time throughout is essential and more easy to work, and therefore they are adopting the Eastern European time throughout. There may be an element of daylight saving, I agree, but I put it that there is also a military element, which is a very strong consideration. Then as regards Holland. One must remember her geographical position in regard to one of the belligerents, and it will seem it is only natural that German hours should be adopted. It has been stated that the change has been carried out with very marked success. It seems to me rather early to make such a statement, seeing that the change was only made a week ago, and we ought to wait and see what its effects are likely to be. Although our Eastern European trade is much less than before the War, we have a considerable trade with America, and I very much doubt whether the business houses and firms which deal telegraphically with America will be willing to sacrifice the last and most important hour for telegraphic communication in order to fall in with this scheme. Indeed, I think many might fail to fall in with it.
The Resolution is drafted in very vague terms, and I hope that when the Home Secretary rises to speak he will tell us what is exactly proposed. There is talk of compulsion, and the hon. Baronet opposite asked whether it was proposed to make it an offence for him to keep his watch at Greenwich mean time. I do not suppose there is any idea of doing that. But I do ask the Home Secretary if it is intended to require, under penalty, that all railway clocks and public clocks shall keep summer season time? I do not expect an answer to that question at the moment, but I hope the right hon. Gentleman will deal with it in his reply. This is one of the questions considered by the Select Committee, and it is one on which we differed. The hon. Baronet the Member for Blackburn (Sir H. Norman) held that the Bill, as it stood, would simply establish summer season time, and by providing that summer season time should be the times referred to in Acts of Parliament, it would be sufficient. I, on the other hand, having given the point some consideration, held that if the change was to be effective it would require some measure of compulsion, and that is the point I now put to the 337 Home Secretary. It is essential the House should know whether it is proposed that to keep at Greenwich mean time railway and other public clocks is to be punishable by a fine. Is it to be legislation along the lines of the Daylight Saving Bill, or is there to be a measure of compulsion enforceable by penalty? I want it to be known if that is so. I would also like to know whether it is to be compulsory on the railway companies. Are they to be required to maintain the present times of the trains or put them an hour forward Take, for instance, the case of market trains or milk trains. Are the hours of those to be altered? If so, it will involve a considerable alteration of the railway; time-tables. The railway time-table is by no means a simple work. It is full of complexities, and unless the measure is generally adopted its advantages may be lost.
I should like to know whether it is to apply to Ireland. The right hon. Gentleman will no doubt bear in mind that Ireland's most important industry is agriculture, and if the Bill is made to apply to it, it may give rise to very great grievances. If it does not so apply, then Irish time will be more out of touch with British time j than it is at the present moment. We have not only to consider the time-tables. We must also have in mind the tide-tables, and there may be a considerable amount of confusion as a result of this change. We must remember that this country is the greatest maritime nation in the world, and in connection with our work at sea there may be no small inconvenience created if our shore time is out of gear with our ship time.
I quite recognise the power of the Government in this matter. But there is one appeal which I should like to make to my right hon. Friend. I have seen it suggested in the papers that if this Resolution is passed it will practically be treated as the Second Reading of a Bill we have not yet seen, and there is talk that in that case it may be enforced by administrative Order. I suggest, in view of the very j general terms of the Resolution, the Government should proceed not by administrative Order under some Act which was never intended to cover such an administrative Order as this, but that it should I proceed by way of Bill, and that a Bill should be put before this House stating clearly what is proposed, and whether there is to be any penalty for keeping Greenwich mean time. I appeal to the right 338 hon. Gentleman the Home Secretary to proceed by way of Bill, so that the matter may be fairly considered by the House. After all, the House is very largely guided by what the Government do, and I can assure my right hon. Friend there would be no great waste of time if he adopted this course. It is proposed that if this Resolution is carried the administrative Order could be brought into force next Sunday, and it would not take more than another week to get a Bill through with the backing of the Government behind it, especially if the Bill was put forward in the form of a workable measure. But I submit that the House should have the proposal before it more clearly than it has now, and I very much doubt whether if such a measure were to become law we should find that the people would all move forward together. I can assure the House that my objections to this Bill are not based on any preconceived notions, and that I have given what consideration I can to it, and have come to the conclusion that the Resolution would not bring about the object of those who are promoting it, bat, broadly speaking, it would create confusion in the matter of time and produce very great inconvenience.
§ Mr. BARNES
I have been in this House now for over ten years, and I have developed a great admiration for the power of the average Member of this House, when he is so disposed, to magnify small points into mountains of difficulty; but I must say that that admiration has been greatly enhanced to-day because of the amazing amount of history, science, philosophy, and all the rest of it, that has been pushed into the opposition to this microscopically modest proposal. What is proposed? One would almost think there was a revolution on hand. The proposal, as I understand it, is to put forward the clock one hour as from a given day a few days hence, until a given day about five or six months hence. That, to my mind, is the beginning and end of the whole proposal. Yet we have been treated upon that microscopically modest proposal to all sorts of discourses on science, history, and all the rest of it. I am going to support heartily the Resolution now before the House as a little measure of practical utility and war economy. I am much surprised to find the hon. Member (Mr. Dundas White), who is my colleague in a political sense, in the same camp with the right hon. Baronet the Member for the City of London (Sir F. Banbury). I have always been accustomed 339 to regard my hon. colleague as a pioneer, yet I find him in the same camp as the right hon. Baronet, who is always in a minority in regard to any change of any sort or description that is proposed.
I am not qualified to enter into the question from the agricultural point of view. I have heard that view expressed from the opposite side of the House, and have listened to it with great respect. I am not going to deal with the agricultural aspect of the question, except in regard to a small matter of production, but there is one aspect of the agricultural question which I hope will be dealt with by the right hon. Gentleman, namely, the question of the hours of labour of agricultural servants. That is the only point with which I am concerned. I do not think it amounts to a great deal, because, as a matter of fact, I am disposed to think that the farmer takes all he can get out of the agricultural labourer now, therefore, inasmuch as you cannot take a quart out of a pint pot, I am not at all disposed to attach a great deal of importance even to this point. There may, however, be something in it. I think it was the hon. Baronet the Member for Blackburn (Sir H. Norman) or the hon. Member for Devizes (Mr. Peto) who expressed the fear that the agricultural population, being more or less disorganised or unorganised, would be made to work an hour later at night by the farmer. At all events, it was said that being comparatively helpless as compared with the town population, the agricultural population might have to work an hour longer. I do not think there is much in it, because the agricultural labourer now works from early morning till late at night. If there is any fear on that head, I would ask the Home Secretary to make provision in the Bill—I agree with my hon. Friend that we ought to have a Bill—whereby these people will be protected. I support the measure. I have always assumed that we shall shift forward together. Anything else is absolutely impossible. We live in a closely packed community, and we must all live together more or less, so that in this matter we must all go forward together. I am going to support the Bill on several grounds. First—and here I refer to the agricultural aspect—we have been told, and quite properly told, that the agricultural problem is getting more acute from day to day. I know that that is so because it happens that I am on the Central Tribunal, where 340 we are dealing with agricultural appeals every day. Whereas prior to the War it used to be customary to have a sort of standard for agricultural labour of one man to 30 or 40 acres, it has now, by a gradual process, mounted up to 60 acres, so that a man on a farm has now to look after 60 acres. That is a rough standard. Even with that, farmers are losing their men and we are pressing women into their service. We all know that the Board of Agriculture has circularised farmers, telling them of the absolute necessity, from a national point of view, of maintaining agricultural production up to the 100 per cent, standard. This Resolution has an important bearing upon that.
What do we find? All round our manufacturing centres the workmen have their gardens. As we know, workmen just now are working overtime. I will take the case of my own son. It happens that he is working in the centre of London and starts work at seven, so that he has to leave before six in the morning. He does not get home till dark, except on Saturday and Sunday. He works the whole Saturday and Sunday in the garden, where he is growing cabbages, potatoes, and all sorts of things whereby to make provision for the time later on in the year to maintain his family. His case is that of hundreds of thousands of working men throughout the length and breadth of this country. The Bill will give every single one of these men an additional hour of daylight in the evening, an hour which they cannot use now because it is dark when they get home. If a Bill founded upon this Resolution were adopted, they would get the benefit of that hour of daylight in the evening to put in work in their gardens, and thereby increase the amount of agricultural produce about which the Agricultural Department is so much concerned in the agricultural districts. In addition to that, even supposing there were no increased agricultural production as a result of the measure, is it not extremely important that the workman should have an hour's additional daylight when he gets home for his amusement or to take his children out? From the human point of view there is everything to be said for the Resolution. That is one of the most important things about it.
Let me say a word with regard to the plea put forward from the opposition and repeated by my hon. Friend, namely, that this Bill should not be pressed forward if 341 it is going to partake of the character of a contentious measure. I believe it is a very modest proposal, and one that ought to have the support of everybody in the House, but if there be any considerable number of Members in the House who have any fears about it, if there be any considerable number of Members of the House who share the doubts—philosophic1 doubts, shall I call them?—of my hon. Friend and colleague, then those doubts ought to be dispelled before we go forward. With the great admiration I have for the logical and oratorical powers of my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary, I have every hope that when he gets up he will dispose of those doubts and that they will disappear as snow melts before the rising sun.
I now come to my main point. We are at war. We have been told by all the authorities that we are to make use of all the resources of the country during the War. I have been saying so myself, being a member of the War Committee set up under the auspices of the Government. In normal times I have no great regard for thrift. Thrift has been preached and sometimes practised by people who would have done far better if they had spent all their money in putting better things on the backs of the children. Still, we are living in a condition of things in which values have acquired quite a new standard altogether. It is not now a question of every man living as he likes; it is a question of every man contributing his quota towards making the very best possible use of all the forces of the country during this War. That is what we have been preaching, and this Resolution and the Bill founded upon it will have an important bearing upon that aspect of the matter. Let me again argue from the particular to the general. I take my own case. I was talking with my wife a day or two ago about this Resolution, and asking her what it would mean to us in the way of lighting. She told me it would mean about 6d. a week—that is to say, inasmuch as we pay now so much for electric light and gas—it happens that we have both—our electric light and gas bill will be 6d. a week less than it has been during the usual summer months. I take my own house and expenditure as a unit of 4,000,000 of similar houses throughout the country. Four millions is not the total number of families, but probably mine is a little above the average so I take 4,000,000 of householders. My house 342 is one of 4,000,000. We save 6d. per week, that is one-fortieth of a £. If you divide 4,000,000 by forty you get £100,000 a week. The number of factories is 40,000—it may be a little over or a little under. I take the saving on light at each one of those factories at £1 a week. That means £40,000 per week. I take the street lighting of the municipal authorities and other bodies of that kind and put the saving at another £40,000. That is merely a guess. I take it that there will be a saving of something like £180,000 per week as a result of the adoption of a Rill founded upon this Resolution.
In the name of common sense, why should we not save that £180,000 a week, or whatever the sum may be I It does not mean that I shall merely have sixpence a week more to spend. That is not the proper aspect of the case. It is a question of the number of men that are now employed giving us that useless addition of sixpence per week, or whatever the sum is—the men who are now employed carrying coals to the gasworks or to the various power stations of the electric light companies and on the various services which are now being wasted and ought to be saved. That is the aspect of the matter that appeals to my mind. [An HoN. MEMBER: "Discharge them!"] Is not everybody gaping for labour from one end of the country to the other? Why talk about discharging them? We are not now living under normal conditions. We are not now living as we were some years ago, when it was difficult for men to get a job. We are looking for men to do all sorts of jobs, and seeking to release men so that they may be used at the front or in the various services of the country that serve the Army and Navy. We are absolutely gaping for them to support our men in the Army, therefore the interjection of the hon. Member has no bearing upon the matter at all. The simple point is that we get up now in the morning two or three hours after daylight. I have not sampled it, by the way. I suppose daylight begins at three or four o'clock. The ordinary factory starts work at six o'clock. Under the new conditions which will be established under the Bill people will start in the morning at daylight. At present they get home at six, seven, or eight o'clock and find that they have very little daylight remaining—indeed, in the bulk of the cases, now that the people are working overtime, they may get no daylight at all—whereas by this saving of an hour's 343 daylight at the end of the day the men to whom it will make no difference in the morning will have an hour's additional daylight in the evening. It is a sensible, modest proposal. I hope, as the result of ample discussion, all the doubts of those who are now opposing it will be dissipated, and that we shall proceed to put it into operation.
§ Lord HUGH CECIL
I quite agree with the hon. Member that it would be absurd to treat this as a grave proposal, supposing it to be limited, as he suggests, to the present year of War, but I confess to disliking it exceedingly. I dislike it, in the first place, because of the extraordinarily fanciful character that is attached to it. Why people cannot put forward a simple reform without imitating the methods of the lowest class of journalism I have never been able to understand. You call it daylight saving, which has really no meaning, and you really mean that people should get up and go to bed a little earlier in summer. I should rather like to know whether the thing will work, after what we have heard from hon. Members since I have been in the House. It certainly will not work unless there is really a great gain in convenience generally felt. You may make the clock what you please, but people will not follow the clock unless it suits the general circumstances of their industry and their way of life, and I am very suspicious that there is a want of general demand for such a change which would be a justification for it. If there was this general need for getting up earlier and going to bed earlier in the summer, should we not see very large numbers of people doing it without any alteration of the law or any alteration of the clock? Should we not see a wider difference between the summer hours and winter hours among ordinary people who are in a position to choose for themselves? We see nothing of the kind. I am, of course, entirely under correction about industrial matters from the hon. Member, who knows so much more about them than I do, but I should certainly have supposed that, if there was a great desire among the working people to get up and to go to bed earlier in the summer, that would find expression in their trade union organisations, and long ago arrangements of that kind would have been made. Is there not in all the schemes of getting up and going to bed earlier this great difficulty, that, 344 whatever they do with the earlier hours of daylight, everyone wants to use the later hours of daylight as much as possible in the open air; therefore they always put off their supper in the summer, and they never want to go to bed immediately after supper. You will always have, therefore, a rather late bedtime and supper in summer whatever you do with the clock. Therefore I believe the hours that people follow are, as a matter of fact, the hours they like, and unless there was some strong evidence to believe that there was a great number of people who wanted to do otherwise, but were prevented by some cantakerous minority who would not adjust their hours to meet their wishes, I do not think there is any case to state.
I think he question of machinery is a very difficult one. I earnestly hope the Government will not accept the suggestion of doing this under the Defence of the Realm Act. That would be a most flagrant abuse of authority. The Defence of the Realm Act certainly was not intended to force upon the country all the little devices that philanthropic crotcheteers may invent from time to time. Unless the Government can honestly say it really does make a difference to the Defence of the Realm it would be a most scandalous thing to use the machinery of that Act for enforcing it. If you do not enforce it, and it is merely a friendly arrangement with the Post Office and the railway companies, how are you going to deal with all the other public clocks? Although in time probably the Post Office and the railways will carry the matter without much difficulty, in the country districts there is no reason for thinking they will at all. The church clock is the common public clock in a country village, and you will find it extremely difficult to persuade people in remote country districts to change the time of the church clock, to which they are accustomed, unless you make it compulsory. You will have large districts where the time will not be changed, and there will be the utmost possible inconvenience of no one knowing what time is the local time by which people's arrangements are governed. I should like to know one or two details of how it is going to work. How is it going to work in regard to the Standing Orders of the House? Are we supposed to have, without any legislation, alterations put into our Standing Orders? Surely not. Then our Standing Orders will refer to Greenwich 345 mean time. In that case we should have this House going by the old time while all the rest of the world goes by the new. Are you going to alter liquor control? I dislike liquor control exceedingly. I never, dislike it more than when it obliges my lunch at a particular hour, if I have any alcoholic liquor. If the time is to be altered in relation to liquor control you will be obliged to get up at a certain hour, to go to bed at a certain hour, and take your meals at certain hours. That seems to me to mark the maximum of fussy interference with the ordinary living of the public with a minimum of result.
It is quite true, as the hon. Member says, that one easily exaggerates these things, but there is one aspect of it which seems to me to raise, if not a grave issue, one which is of some importance. If you are going to allow the State to interfere with these very personal matters and with individual habits most remote from general political importance, where are you going to restrain the State from interfering? It is always true that the acts of one individual affect the acts of another. If you are going to accept the position that the State is entitled to interfere wherever it can be shown that if you do not interfere those who do not accept your view will be a hindrance to those who do accept your view, might not you interfere with the rates of wages? The rate of wages in every employment affects the rate of wages in every other employment, and here you have a precisely similar case. It might be said that unless the State regulates the rate of wages in all employments you cannot proceed piecemeal because the other employments are affected by any particular employment, therefore whenever wages on the whole go up you must have an Act of Parliament to put them up, and whenever on the whole they go down you must have an Act of Parliament to put them down. There is no hon. Member who would welcome an application of that kind, but if you are once, going to adopt the view that the State is to interfere, wherever its interference would carry out some supposed advantageous change, to get uniformity or action, there is no limit to the control you are going to have at all, and it is dawning on everyone during the present war that the control of the State, instead of being the control of the people, the control of this House, or the control 346 of anything which any of us deeply respect, may come to be a bureaucracy animated by the most active and least trustworthy influences on public opinion, and may indeed, if the system be extended to times of peace, wreck the liberty of the subject without contributing in the slightest degree to the efficiency of Government or to the prosperity of the country. Therefore I earnestly hope the right hon. Gentleman will not tell us he is going to adopt this plan unless he can really show that there is a substantial benefit for the purposes of war, and, secondly, that he will give us a most definite assurance that it is not intended to commit us in time of peace to a measure which is certainly of a controversial character, and, as I think, is open to very grave objection.
§ Mr. HERBERT SAMUEL
The Noble Lord has asked for an assurance that the Government will not support this-measure unless there is reason to think that it is in the nature of a war measure, and the right hon. Baronet (Sir F. Banbury), who opened the opposition to this Motion, asked for an explanation why it was that the proposal, which had hitherto been contentious, should have had an opportunity afforded to it by the Government in this sitting of the House of Commons unless it were definitely adopted as a war measure. The Government would not have dreamt of favouring this measure or of inviting the House to consider it unless it had reason to think that it was essentially advantageous for war purposes. The question of our coal supply is one which is giving us serious concern. A large number of miners in the early part of the War were enlisted for the Army, and although the output per man has increased owing to the greater regularity of labour, to working the best seams of coal, and owing to other causes, the fact remains that the output, nevertheless, is declining and has declined considerably from the normal. Our Allies are in urgent need of increased supplies of British coal. We are casting about in every direction for means to increase our coal supplies, and when a proposal is made which, we believe, and indeed are convinced, would lead to a large economy of certainly many hundreds of thousands of tons of coal in the course of a year, we cannot regard that as a matter of indifference. The question was first brought prominently to my 347 notice, so far as official bodies are concerned, by the Expert Committee which has been set up to advise the Government on the disposal of our coal output. That Central Committee on the Disposal of Coal unanimously passed a resolution urging the Government to adopt this plan which has been known as daylight saving in order to save this large consumption of coal, and recently, as the House is aware, the Board of Trade found it necessary to urge upon all gas and electric light companies a reduction in their consumption of coal. That is the prime reason why at present the Government looks with a favourable eye on the Motion of the hon. Baronet.
Further there will be a distinct economy to the nation if, as we believe will be the case, the expenditure upon the fuel necessary for providing artificial light for something approaching 150 hours is saved to the nation. How much that economy is is exceedingly difficult to estimate, and I should be very sorry indeed to tie myself to any figure, but all the facts that I have seen indicate, to my own mind at all events, that the saving is more likely to be a question of millions than of hundreds of thousands of pounds, and at a time when we are urging the nation in every way to economise expenditure, in order to have more money to place at the disposal of the Government for the prosecuting of the War, that again is a fact which must weigh very heavily in the balance. It is continually said by individuals throughout the nation full of patriotic ardour, unable themselves to take their places in the fighting line, "What more can we do? Let the Government only tell us what more we can do and the nation gladly and unanimously will follow." Now, when the Government suggests one thing which can be done to save some hundreds of thousands of tons of coal and to save probably some millions of money, we have all kinds of minute, meticulous, theoretical objections raised in opposition to a proposal of this character. It is true, further, that this measure would give better opportunity for recreation to large numbers of working people. It is true, on the other hand, that in these days none of us are very much disposed to trouble about opportunities for recreation for their own sake. We must concentrate our whole minds upon the War and not upon further opportunities for amusements. 348 But this has to be remembered in that connection, that healthfulness and cheerfulness do have their value in maintaining the moral of the whole nation. Therefore, indirectly though it be, this consideration also plays a part in this connection. The right hon. Member (Sir F. Banbury) said that, as a matter of fact, if people did get an extra hour for outdoor amusement and recreation it would be at the expense of their sleep. I submit, very respectfully, that that is not necessarily so. People in the summer now get more hours for recreation outdoors than they do in the winter time, but they do not necessarily go to bed later. Instead of having one hour indoors in the evening, from early summer to late summer, reading by artificial light, they would have one hour outdoors playing games, or amusing themselves in other ways, and going to bed at the same time, if the clocks are altered, and they get an extra hour, not at the expense of their sleep, but at the expense of their indoor occupations.
As far as the impracticability of the measure is concerned, let it be remembered that great States have, in fact, put it into operation, and are living under the changed conditions of time at this very moment. Not only Germany and Austro-Hungary, but also Holland, have adopted this change. And let me on this point say that it is an ingenious, but not an acceptable, theory of my hon. Friend the Member for the Tradeston Division of Glasgow (Mr. Dundas White) that Germany and Austro-Hungary have adopted this measure, not for its own sake, or for the economy it brings, but in order to bring themselves into uniformity as to hours with Bulgaria and Turkey.
I only suggested that as one of the reasons, and that daylight saving was not the only factor.
§ Mr. SAMUEL
At any rate, I, do not think that it is an hypothesis which is likely to commend itself to the House. In the discussions in Germany and Austro-Hungary I do not think anyone has said that it was really necessary to alter their time in order to be in keeping with the time of their invaluable Allies in the East. Holland also has adopted the changed time, and, as my hon. Friend who moved this Motion (Sir H. Norman) has pointed out, the French Chamber of Deputies has adopted it at the motion of the Government under the leadership of a very distinguished scientist, the Minister of Instruction and Public Works, and 349 it awaits the consideration of the Senate. I know also that in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway the same plan is at this moment under consideration of the Governments, and although no decision has yet been reached, it is regarded by those, who are competent to speak that it is at least probable that within the next few days those three Governments may announce simultaneously the adoption of this measure. It will be unfortunate, but by no means unprecedented, if the United Kingdom, which was the first to originate this idea, should, owing to its slowness to move, be the last country in Europe to adopt it.
We have heard nothing to-day from the standpoint of the trade interests of the gas and electric light undertakings, which were represented strongly before the Select Committee of the House which considered this proposal some years ago. That is, of course, to the credit of those interests, but an hon. Member has asked me what will be the position of corporation gasworks, which will lose a part of their revenue, and the deficit will have to be made up by the ratepayers. He reminds me of the famous mock petition of the candle and lamp makers in the book of economics against the unfair competition of the sun. That most amusing supposititious document was presented by all the interests concerned in artificial lighting, who protested strongly against their being called upon to wage such an unequal struggle with that formidable competitor, the sun, and urged the State to protect them by requiring curtains and blinds to be drawn all through the daytime. The gas and electric light companies and the corporation departments exist for the service of man, but man does not exist in order to be a customer for gas and electric light concerns. If the suggestion in itself is good and practicable, the interests which depend for their incomes upon the supply of artificial light must adapt themselves to the changed circumstances. As a matter of fact, I think that at this moment, when the price of coal is so high and the supply is so restricted, that the gas and electric light companies will be rather glad to be relieved of the obligation of maintaining their coal supply at the same point as at present.
We now come to the main argument of the opponents of this Motion, which has been very forcibly put by the Noble Lord (Lord Hugh Cecil), and which was put in 350 very clear and effective language by the right hon. Baronet (Sir F. Banbury), and which was also put by the hon. Member for the Tradeston Division. The right hon. Baronet said, with his ingenuousness, "if a man wishes to rise an hour earlier in the morning and go to bed an hour earlier at night, why should he not do so without the assistance of a maternal, or grand-maternal Government?"
§ Mr. SAMUEL
Of course, if the individual is to have an extra hour before his breakfast and is to have an hour less after his dinner or supper, as the case may be, nothing is simpler but, if he wishes to move the whole routine of his day forward by one hour he simply, as a rule, cannot do it, unless the rest of society, or at all events that society with which he is in touch, does it also. Take the position of the ordinary business man who lives in some suburb, or some place in the neighbourhood of a great town. He might think, foolishly, acting on the advice of the right hon. Baronet, that he would see what he could do in the way of individual daylight saving. He moves his whole day an hour forward in order to show that he is quite independent of the State and of the rest of the community, and will carry out and manage his own life on his own lines and in his own way. He comes down an hour earlier to breakfast. The first blow that will probably strike him is the fact that the mikman has not yet been. Therefore he must have his morning coffee without milk. The newspaper has not yet arrived, and he is unable to lean it in a convenient place on his breakfast table, and, as he is accustomed to do, get his day's news over his morning meal. He finds that his letters have not yet come, and in all probability the postman will not arrive until after he has left his house and gone to his business. Next, he goes to catch his usual train and finds that the express by which he is accustomed to travel will not go for another hour, and that he has got to go to his place of business by some slow train, stopping at every station or junction. If he is fortunate enough to arrive at the office an hour, or nearly an hour before his usual time, he will find that his clerks are not there, that his letters have not been opened, and that the whole of his daily routine has been upset. When he leaves an hour earlier than usual 351 to go to luncheon at his club he finds that the luncheon is not yet served, and when he determines to return home at four o'clock in the afternoon instead of five o'clock he discovers next day that many of his customers or correspondents have called, as usual, between four and five, an hour after he left, and that he has missed a great deal of valuable business. If he wishes in the evening to go to a theatre, it is no use presenting himself there an hour before the doors open, and if he determines to take an evening's amusement at the play he will find that he has to do it only at the expense of an hour's sleep at night. As to the working man, the whole routine of his day depends upon his working hours. His mealtimes and his time for sleep depend entirely upon the hours of the place of employment at which he works, and to imagine that he, as an individual, can determine for himself the hours of his daily routine is absurd. If he were to present himself at the factory or workshop an hour before the gates opened, or if he seeks to leave his bench or his machine an hour before the factory or workshop closes he will soon find that daylight saving on the basis of individual action is an utter impossibility.
§ Mr. SAMUEL
If there was one method of doing it which would be worse than another it would be the method suggested by the hon. Member for the Tradeston Division of Glasgow, namely, to try to persuade each particular factory, one by one, to adopt this measure. Leaving the trains, the post, the production of newspapers, as it is, you would simply introduce universal confusion throughout the whole of our social and industrial system, and the world would say, whatever harm there may be in adopting daylight saving by a single Act and altering the clocks, nothing could be worse than to try to get everyone to adopt gradually those hours in proportion as you were able to persuade them to do so. My right hon. Friend who moved the Motion has disposed of the argument that altering the clock is something in the character of flying in the face of nature. There are, I believe, some people in this country who think that anyone who supports this Motion is almost in the nature of a new presumptuous Joshua who would say:Sun stand thou still upon Gideon, and moon in the Valley of Ajalon.352 Clock time is, of course, a purely artificial thing. Most people's clocks and watches do not correspond with sun time at all. The hon. Members who come from the West of England are always a quarter of an hour or twenty minutes in advance of sun time. When they look at their watch and say, "It is twelve o'clock," it is not twelve o'clock at all by the sun, but it is about twenty minutes to twelve. Those of us who are accustomed to travel know quite well that, for example, when you go from France to Switzerland you constantly have to alter your watch by an hour. You have to alter your watch from Greenwich time which France has, to Central European time. No one imagines that if there are two villages side by side, one on one side of the frontier and the other on the other side of the frontier, that the time in those two villages is really an hour different; there is nothing approaching an hour's difference in sun time. When you travel, as I recently did, across Canada from the Atlantic to the Pacific, you first go through a belt of Atlantic time, then a belt of Eastern time, then of Central time, then one of mountain time, then finally of Pacific time. You pass through five separate zones of time in the journey from one ocean to the other, and the people living at the edges of each of those zones are half an hour away from sun time every day of their lives. Greenwich time will be untouched by a measure of this kind. Greenwich time for scientific purposes, for the purpose of navigation, and as a measure for the times which depend upon Greenwich in the other countries of the world, will remain absolutely untouched. Let us remember that this proposal, as my right hon. Friend (Sir H. Norman) said, has the support of many of the greatest scientists in the world, and although the present Astronomer Royal is not personally in favour of it, the late Sir Robert Ball expressed an opinion entirely in its favour,, and men of the distinction of Sir William Ramsay see no difficulty and no objection in its adoption.
I will now come to the objection raised on the part of the agriculturists. It is true that the milkers will have an hour's more darkness during the summer months than they had before. What does that amount to? The sun in the spring rises each month about one hour earlier than it rose the month before. In May, for example, it rises an hour earlier than in April, and if the clock is altered as we propose, all 353 that will happen will be that the early milkers and the women workers on the land and others will have just as much darkness in May as they had in April. They would simply have this experience that they had in the previous month in ordinary circumstances, and that is the whole of the inconvenience to which they will be exposed. If it be said that some of the fruit pickers may be inconvenienced with respect to the packing of the fruit that is despatched by the early morning train, that may be so. I do not deny that there may be inconvenience to the strawberry pickers, but that is a consideration which must yield in these times to the wider and more important considerations which favour this proposal. And even if we do receive our strawberries in this year of war not so freshly picked as we had them in time of peace, I think that that is a hardship which we can put up with in consideration of the wider arguments in favour of this Bill. While the Board of Agriculture, which has been consulted in this matter, admits that it may be inconvenient to agriculturists, it does not oppose the adoption of the measure, and the hon. Member for the Wilton Division (Captain C Bathurst), whom we are always accustomed to listen to here as an exponent of the views of agriculture, has to-day written a letter to the Press—he is unable to be here on account of military duties—saying that in consideration of the war arguments advanced in favour of the Bill, though he himself opposed it in the past on behalf of agriculture and gave evidence against it before Select Committees, he could not now conscientiously oppose such a measure in existing circumstances. "The paramount necessity of economising fuel and falling into line with our Allies is, on balance, the more important consideration in these critical days."
The hon. Member for Ashford spoke of the difficulty to which newspapers had been subjected. I believe that possibly they may be put to some inconvenience in respect of the receipt and publication of news, but most patriotically one finds that practically all the newspapers in the country are now strongly advocating the adoption of this measure. The Postmaster-General informs me that he too, is in favour of it, though the Post Office opposed it previously, partly on account of Continental mails: but if France and Holland adopt the measure that argument works the other way. Such interference as there would be would 354 arise from retaining a different hour from the hour adopted by our neighbours across the Channel. But the mails from the Continent are so irregular just now that that consideration has very little weight either on one side or the other. The Railway Executive Committee which is managing the railways on behalf of the Government has written saying that as a body it is favourable to the proposal. The Stock Exchange Committee, which previously was active in opposition, has written that it does not oppose it in existing circumstances, especially since the Stock Exchange now closes at three o'clock in the afternoon, and the point which was emphasised previously that the one hour in which the London and New York Stock Exchanges were open simultaneously would be taken away no longer applies because, as the House already knows, there is no hour of the day when the New York and the London Stock Exchanges are simultaneously open. A very large number of municipal authorities associations have declared in favour of the proposal, and I receive from day to day hundreds of resolutions from local authorities, chambers of commerce and other bodies in favour of its adoption.
Turn to the method which the Executive would propose to adopt if the House should indicate its support of the proposal. At the present time the railways are under the control of the Government, and it would merely need an administrative Act to alter all the railway clocks and simultaneously alter the trains throughout the country. The whole of the railway service system could adapt itself easily to the new time. In the Post Office it can also be adopted in the same way. There is an Act which fixes hours and which defined "hour" in any Statute as Greenwich mean time in Great Britain and Dublin mean time in Ireland. In conformity with that Act there are fixed the hours in factories and workshops in which women and children are employed, licensed houses also have their hours fixed by law, and a number of other establishments are compelled by law to keep the time which the law requires. The law must necessarily be altered in order to secure that the new time should have legal validity. As soon as that law is altered to that effect all the factories and workshops and all the licensed houses must adapt themselves accordingly. The rest of the public-houses must necessarily follow suit. If you alter all the times of the railways and of the 355 post offices, factories, and workshops, and, not least important, of the public-houses, you will find that the mass of mankind will alter their clocks and watches in conformity. There will be no penalty by law on individuals, such as the hon. Baronet, who, in dignified isolation and stubborn individualism, would refuse to conform, but he would very quickly find that he was subject to a penalty, though self-imposed. He would be out of step with the rest of mankind. He would find himself an hour late for everything, and he would very soon discover that it was necessary, however reluctant he might be, to alter his watch in accordance with all the clocks about him and the watches of other people.
To enable the public to recognise that the change was being made, it is proposed that notices should be prominently placed in the post offices and elsewhere, and local authorities would be invited to alter town clocks and church authorities would be invited to alter church clocks, and the assistance of the Press would be invoked to impress upon the mind of every individual throughout the nation that on a specified night and a given time the hour would be altered, and in their own interests they would be well advised to alter their domestic timepieces. The Government, of course, would be unwilling to effect a change of this kind without the approval of the House of Commons, and that is why this Motion was moved. It was thought that it would be possible to effect the change without legislation by Order in Council, since this is only a War measure adopted for War purposes, but on the whole it has been thought advisable to secure the sanction of Parliament in a more regular fashion by a short Bill, and if the House approves of this Resolution and indicates by a considerable majority that it desires the measure to proceed that Bill can be introduced to-morrow. It would be for the period of the War only, in order that the matter may be considered after the War is over in the light of the experience beginning this year. If the Bill is passed this week, as we should hope it may be, if the House generally is favourable to the measure, I should propose that the change would be effected in the night of Saturday-Sunday, May 20th-21st, that is to say, next Saturday week. If it is to be done at all, the sooner it is done the better. Every week that passes lessens the advantage to be derived from it. I 356 should propose also that normal time should be restored during the night of Saturday-Sunday, 30th September-lst October. Then I confess that that is the moment when I am inclined to think the greatest difficulties may arise, for though the public may readily welcome an extension of daylight during the spring, when they find that the evenings shorten with a jerk, at the end of September, some objection may be raised in certain quarters. However, in view of the advantages to be derived from the measure, I am hoping that that inconvenience will be endured without much complaint.
Mr. TYSON WILSON
Can the right hon. Gentleman give the House any information with regard to the experience of countries that have adopted this system, and whether they have reverted back to the old system?
§ Mr. SAMUEL
I have not known any case of a country which has adopted it and has gone back. I believe that individual towns have tried it, and found that they were out of step with the surrounding towns, and therefore it was not very successful in these cases. But I have not any definite information on that point. I may add that the hour which is suggested is the hour of two o'clock on Sunday morning, that being the time chosen by the Railway Executive Committee as being the most convenient from the point of view of railway management. In this matter I think that the railways should have a decisive voice in choosing the moment of effecting the change. In respect of time in Ireland and the advantage of securing the uniformity of British and Irish time, Irish time, as the House knows, is twenty-five minutes behind British time. It has long been felt in many quarters that it was exceedingly desirable to unify the time throughout the British Isles. When I was Postmaster-General I supported that proposal from the standpoint of the Post Office, to which it would be a very great convenience, and among many other interests there was a general desire to secure uniformity. I cannot, however, propose that measure at this moment, for two-reasons. In the first place, because it is impossible, owing to recent events in Ireland, to ascertain what is really the opinion of the Irish Government and the Irish public. The matter must be considered from the standpoint of Ireland, as much as from the standpoint of England, and we must wait until 357 more normal times before we can express an opinion upon the legislation which is now proposed as legislation for the War only, while the unification of Irish and British times would be effected by a Statute which would remain permanently upon the Statute Book.
But it would be a very convenient moment to effect that unification, if at all, when the daylight saving experiment of this year comes to an end, whether it continues for another year or not, because Irish time could be unified with English time in this way: The 1st of October comes. If the clocks in England are put back one hour and the clocks in Ireland were put back thirty-five minutes instead of one hour it would be found that Irish time had been unified with British time. It would not be necessary to effect any change in Ireland. It could be done with one change, and if Irish public opinion is favourable to the measure I have little doubt but that the House of Commons will be willing to pass a special short Bill between now and the 1st of October which would enable that unification, in my view very desirable in the circumstances, to be carried out. The hon. Gentleman who moved the Motion was good enough to make some kind remarks with respect to the part I have played in forwarding this proposal, but the credit which is due to me is small indeed. If this measure finds favour in this House and is carried into effect, the credit rests rather with him and with my hon. Friend the Member for the Louth Division (Mr. Timothy Davies), whom we are so glad to see here, and other hon. Members of this House who, in season and out of season, have pressed forward this measure. Above all, the credit will be due to the late Mr. William Willett, who, I think, devoted not only his ingenious mind, but an infinity of time, trouble, and money in promoting this measure. How often has it happened that a great architect has died just before the building which he designed has been completed, or the musician has passed away before his chef d'œuvre has ever been performed. There are many instances of that kind, and amongst them will be ranked the pathos of the death of Mr. William Willett, who for so many years laboured in this cause, just at the moment before it was being adopted over a large part of Europe, and, I for my part hope, in the country in which he himself originated it. This proposal has behind it an almost 358 unanimous Press, which, in a matter of this kind, is an indication of public opinion. It is favoured, I believe, by authoritative representative bodies of all kinds throughout the country, and the opposition to it is small indeed. The Government commends it to the House as advantageous for the better prosecution of the War.
§ Sir J. SPEAR
The right hon. Gentleman stated that this measure is necessary in the interests of the conduct of the War, and when he states that it makes one hesitate about arguing the matter further. But I am so convinced that the passing of this Motion will not bring the country or the Government that assistance which they believe they will obtain, especially in regard to the question of food production, that I feel I must ask the House to allow me to give my reasons for differing from what has been submitted to Members of the House in regard to this proposal. I cannot admit that the right hon. Gentleman has successfully refuted the arguments brought forward by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the City of London, who, I think, showed very conclusively that the saving of money under this Bill, if it be adopted, will be very much smaller than what is perhaps expected by the Government. The right hon. Gentleman the Home Secretary advanced an argument in favour of the Motion by pointing to the desirability of greater opportunities for recreation being afforded to our workers. I quite agree that it is most desirable that our workers indoors should have as much open air as possible after their work is done. The right hon. Gentleman seems to have forgotten, however, that this Bill, when passed, will seriously interfere with the open-air opportunities of a large number of workers. It has been the object of social reformers to get our workers into the country to live, to enable them to dwell in healthy positions and healthy cottages. It is a very strong argument which relies for support on social well-being, which should be encouraged. I submit, however, that in passing this Bill you will discourage the movement in that direction. It must be remembered that the men who live in these outlying districts have already to leave their homes at a very early hour in order to get to their work. If this Bill is passed they will have to leave one hour earlier.
My chief reason in rising is to show what I believe will be the case that a very 359 serious increase in the price of food will result from the operation of this measure. The right hon. Member for the City of London, and an hon. Member for a Division of Kent, have spoken so ably on the agricultural question that I do not propose to follow the arguments which they have addressed to the House, but every one of which I fully support. I submit that the enactment of this measure would so handicap the growth of corn and the production of milk that it will seriously increase the cost to the consumer of these two most important and desirable commodities. With regard to corn, it has been fully shown that the farmers cannot deal with corn very often until ten o'clock in the morning because of the heavy dew; whereas they have to go on very late after the corn has got into a condition in which it can be dealt with. It would be extremely serious at this time when we are being denuded of agricultural labourers in the rural districts to have this additional burden placed upon the farmers. The result will be the laying down of more arable land into pasture, and a greater decline in corn growing—which is already seriously menacing the State. Although I admit there are some advantages in the Bill, still, it should not be forgotten that there are these disadvantages to which I have referred. In regard to the binding of corn, the binder cannot commence his work until it is sufficiently dry, so that the one hour taken away in the afternoon is of more value in securing corn and food for the people than would be two hours in the earlier part of the day. Therefore, this proposal must add to the difficulties connected with the growing of corn very considerably.
Then, in regard to women working on the farm. We all know that it is most desirable, at least as far as possible, to have the assistance of women in order to make up for the absence of men, so that the land may be as fully used as possible to bring forward the greatest amount of food. But it is impossible that women can go out earlier in the morning to do, for example, the work of hoeing. We admit that women render great services in the hoeing of crops, potatoes, and so on, but they are not able to work in the early morning because of the heavy dew, which would make their clothes wringing wet and cause them great inconvenience, 360 not to speak of the menace to their health from having to work under those conditions. With reference to fruit growing, the right hon. Gentleman admits that this measure would seriously handicap that industry. The fruit has to be picked at a time when it can be sent to market in fair condition. The stock men have to be up now at four o'clock to prepare the stock for market, and to get up an hour earlier will have a serious effect.
Another fact which has to be taken into consideration, when we are considering this measure, is the supply of milk. One of the most serious menaces to our food supply at the present moment is connected with the milk supply. An unfortunate circumstance in connection with the producing of milk, in recent years, has been the great difficulty in getting men to milk the cows, with the result that it has caused a great many farmers to give up dairy farming, so that milk is becoming more and more scarce, while the price has gone up very seriously during the summer. Indeed, if this goes on very much longer, the poorer classes of the community will get no milk at all, and we say that this Bill would seriously aggravate the situation in regard to the milk supply. At one of the milk-producing farms where the milkers, as it is, get up at four o'clock, I put the question how they would like to get up an hour earlier in order to catch the morning trains and get the milk into London for breakfast purposes. I found that they were utterly against such a proposal, and, difficult as it has been to get milkers under existing circumstances, I am satisfied that the difficulty will be so enhanced that a large number of dairy keepers will give up keeping cows entirely, and then we shall have such a decline of the milk supply as to bring about a serious menace to the health of the people. I would like to read a letter which I have received from the president of the Devon Farmers' Union. He is also chairman of the Devon Agricultural Committee; he is a level-headed gentleman, and, from his position as an agriculturist, he is entitled to consideration. He writes on the 6th May:The Devon Farmers' Union have passed a resolution against the Daylight Saving Bill, and I think you may safely assume that they are still opposed to it. An hour in the afternoon, as you are well aware, is of far greater value than an hour in the morning. Another point affecting agriculture is the supply of milk to the towns. At present the milking on many farms has to commence at five o'clock in the morning, in order to deliver in time in the towns for breakfast It is difficult to get milkers now on account of the early hours, Sunday included. If milkers are required to 361 come at four o'clock a.m., the difficulty will be increased, and the dairies will be given up. The general objection to bringing in a disturbing element of this nature, which would affect everybody when most people are distracted in other ways, will not be lost sight of. I hope that you will be able to get the Bill postponed until after the War, when we will be better able to adapt ourselves to it, if necessary.Though I admit some advantages in the Bill, yet I do urge that the further increase in the price of food, which is already too high, and the fact that the production of milk will be affected and will be decreased, are matters which deserve very serious consideration. I would ask the right hon. Gentleman whether, in the Bill, it would be possible to exclude agriculture from its purview? It seems that some differences of view exist about it, and I have just received a very pressing letter from a large farmer in Devonshire this morning urging that agriculture must be left out of the purview of the Bill. I do not know whether that is practicable, but if the right hon. Gentleman thought he could effect that object I think that at least it would be better than to force the industry to come under the conditions of the Bill—conditions which would result in diminishing the food supply, undoubtedly a most serious question just now, especially in connection with the successful carrying on of the War. I hope the right hon. Gentleman may find it possible not to include agriculture in the Bill. All I can do is to enter my protest, while saying that I believe that the farmers, if the Bill does become law, will do their best in the circumstances. But I am satisfied that with the great dearth of labour both for milk production and the cultivation of the land the result would be a further considerable diminution in the output of those two classes of agricultural produce.
§ 7.0 P.M.
I think the speech of the Home Secretary this afternoon has convinced all of us, practically, of the necessity of this change at the present moment. Although many of us perhaps thought it was an ill-timed moment to introduce a Bill on the subject, those of us who have heard the arguments from all sides of the House will now be quite willing to back up the Government in the proposed measure. I am sorry to differ from my hon. Friend who has just spoken on the question of agriculture. I represent an agricultural community myself, and I know that they are very anxious that this Bill should get through. My reason for intervening is to express keen disappointment that the right hon. 362 Gentleman has not seen fit to take this most excellent opportunity of synchronising the time in Ireland with that of England. For years and years past we have endeavoured in this House to get away from that anomaly that when we travel from here to our own homes in Ireland we have to change our watches going and coming and to feel that there is a difference between those two parts of the United Kingdom. I presume, first of all, that the Bill does apply to Ireland.
Then I say it will be very simple for the right hon. Gentleman to make a clean sweep of this difference.
If it is an advantage to this country during the War it would be an advantage in Ireland, and let us try even during the period of the War to bring the United Kingdom into a real United Kingdom so far as the time is concerned. I know the right hon. Gentleman is in favour of it himself, but I am only putting forward that plea. He says that the sole and only reason why the times are not to be synchronised is that because of what has recently occurred in Dublin and the South and West of Ireland he is not able to ascertain opinion in that part of the country, and therefore he denies to us what we consider would be an inestimable advantage. I do not know whether the right hon. Gentleman is aware that we have three times in Ireland, separate and distinct, at the present moment. First of all, the Post Office sends out its telegrams with English time upon them, and when you are dealing with the Post Office you are dealing with Greenwich or English time. When you get to Dublin you have what is called railway or Dublin time, and when you get to other parts you have a time which is two minutes different from what it is in Dublin. Why all these different clock times throughout Ireland, and would it not be perfectly simple in this Bill to say that the time laid down by the Bill shall be applicable to the whole of the United Kingdom? Could anything be simpler or fairer? Certainly nothing could be more satisfactory to those of us who live in the North, where we have been making this endeavour for many 363 years past. If it is impossible for the right hon. Gentleman to ascertain the feelings of the people in the south and west end of Dublin, will he take it from me as to the feeling in the North? The Belfast Chamber of Commerce, which is well recognised as representing all classes, industrial and agricultural, throughout the North of Ireland, is, he may take it from me, most anxious that this particular psychological moment should be taken to make a standard time throughout the whole of the country.
If it is impossible to make this Bill apply to the whole of Ireland, will he not allow us in Ulster, who are more nearly allied to the rest of the United Kingdom than any other part of the country, to have this change. We are certainly most anxious in Ulster to have English time in the future, even if only for the time of the War. I understand that when the War is over this Bill will again come under consideration, and that if it has proved to be a success it might be adopted in time of peace. I think it was one of his chief arguments that this would be a trial. If it is to be tried during the summer months during the War, I ask what on earth is to prevent Ulster from having a trial at the same time, so that when the War is over we shall be able to judge whether it is worth continuing or not? All the arguments in the one case are equally applicable in the other. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will use his influence and go a step further than he has gone. I and my Friends who are working with me are very anxious in this matter. We refrained purposely from putting down any Amendments to the Motion because we did not want to imperil the Bill or to prevent it being carried unanimously, so as to show that the House of Commons was desirous of backing up the Government in doing anything which would help on the War. I think, as a slight reward for that, we might ask the right hon. Gentleman to consider the point I have raised. This is a matter which we have very few opportunities of raising, and there may not be another opportunity for a long time. I would ask the right hon. Gentleman to give the matter his favourable consideration, and I can assure him that we in the North of Ireland would appreciate it very much indeed.
§ Mr. NEVILLE
I desire to refer to some of the war economies which are to be effected by this Resolution. I am pleased to be able to support the Resolution which comes from my own borough. I am speaking on behalf of the gas industry, and I think the House ought to know that there are some other considerations besides those mentioned. I should like to point out that war explosives today are coming from the gas industry, toluol and benzol, two substances which the Government are subsidising every gas company to make. Therefore if you cut down the manufacture of gas you are cutting down the manufacture of explosives and of benzol, which the Government are doing their best to secure. That is an argument that has to be put on one side as against the suggested advantages. Speaking on behalf of industries that are interested in the making of gas, I may say we do not think ourselves that this proposal will have any prejudicial effect upon them. Small companies may find themselves prejudiced, but in the case of the big companies and the municipalities, they are not supplying gas for lighting purposes at present to anything like the extent to which they are supplying gas or light to munition factories which work right throughout the dark hours. Therefore, I do not think in those cases this would have the economy that has been suggested, or anything like it. When we are told, as some speakers have stated, that the only difference of putting on the clock is that there will be as much darkness in May as in April, I should like to point out that the position is this: One of the most profitable times during which gas is produced and used is the hour before the working men go to work. Owing to the prevalence of slot meters in industrial areas, the most useful time for the working man is when he is getting up. He gets shaving water made hot and his breakfast in the hour before he goes out to work. Therefore, so far as there is any economy in the consumption of gas by altering the time, I am afraid you will not find it in that case, because that is the time when the working man uses gas.
There is another important matter which has got to be considered. So far as the Home Secretary was speaking about the gas companies, I quite agree with him when he said that those who are interested in gas production are afraid for their deliveries of coal owing to the shortage of tonnage and of trucks, and 365 of miners, and owing to railway difficulties. The great difficulty we have at the present time is to get delivery of coal. We should welcome, as the Home Secretary said, any scheme which would have the effect of making us less anxious about the delivery of our coal. Most of the advantages and the economies, as I understand it, are expected to come from the gas industry. I daresay electric light will be hit, and that oil may be affected, and that tallow chandlers may also be affected, but I do not think he will find that there will be any really great economy in the consumption of coal so far as gas is concerned. The pity of it is that coal which is being consumed in private houses cannot be made available for producing toluol and benzol which the Government are doing their best to get made. If this should have the effect of reducing the consumption of coal for gas, then there will be a corresponding shortage of toluol and benzol, which is the most important matter. Benzol is now largely being used as a substitute for petrol. It is a substance made in this country, and renders us independent of outside supplies of oils. I think the House ought to consider these important matters before coming to a conclusion?
§ Mr. BOLAND
The Home Secretary, referring to the case of Ireland, dealt with the matter, to my mind, in a far more reasonable way than the hon. and gallant Member for East Down (Colonel Craig). It is quite true that for many years there has been a good deal of division of opinion as to the synchronising of English and Irish times. If the suggestion of the hon. and gallant Member were carried out, whereas you in England would have an additional hour to change, we in Ireland would have an hour and twenty-five minutes to change. The Home Secretary made a far better suggestion, and that is that between this and the 30th of September, if there is a general measure of assent to the synchronising of the time between England and Ireland, that it should be done on the 30th of September, rather than now when the Bill is brought in, because there would only be a question of twenty-five minutes change, whereas now a change of an hour and twenty-five minutes would have to be made. In this Debate we have heard a good deal about agricultural interests. I speak as one who, from the moment Mr. Willett produced it, always approved of the idea, and was most anxious to see it 366 brought into operation. As a War measure, I think it is an extraordinarily valuable time in which to adopt it. Seeing that many people in this country have raised objections to the moving on of the clock in Englnd by one hour, yet if the suggestion of the hon. and gallant Member for East Down were adopted we would have to move on the clock in Ireland by an hour and twenty-five minutes in order to synchronise English and Irish time, since Irish time is twenty-five minutes behind English time. I hope that the suggestion of the Home Secretary will be considered favourably, and that opinion between this and the 30th of September will be canvassed in Ireland as to synchronising English and Irish time, but that no effort will be made in a War measure such as this to put forward a proposal on which a number of people in Ireland have different opinions.
§ Captain Sir OWEN PHILIPPS
As a shipowner I should like to mention one effect which this change will have. Shipowners, as the House knows, very often have to work overtime to get a mail steamer away. The country at the present time is very much concerned owing to the shortage of shipping. That shortage is brought about partly by delays at the ports. In normal times when a mail steamer wants to get away you work overtime at night to complete the loading. On several occasions recently our mail steamers have been delayed in the port of London because the Government, quite rightly in my opinion, say that when there is a possibility of a Zeppelin raid we must not have lights in the docks. Therefore work has to be stopped as soon as it becomes dark, and the ship is delayed. I am not bringing before the House the loss caused to the shipowner by the delay. But tonnage can only do a certain amount of work, and every day you delay a steamer accentuates the shortage of tonnage. Therefore I believe that this Resolution, if carried into effect, will materially help the nation in the present shortage of tonnage. Another point of great importance is that of reducing the consumption of coal. We all know how this country and the Allied nations are suffering from the present shortage of coal, and we are aware of the high prices that everybody has to pay for coal in consequence. Therefore by reducing the consumption of coal by gas and electric lighting companies you will, in my opinion, be performing a very useful service. This 367 Resolution is recommended to us by a representative of the Government as a war measure. Members of the Cabinet have been criticised from time to time for not recommending things unanimously unless they had a crisis. I understand that this is recommended unanimously by the twenty-three members of the Cabinet; therefore it will receive my very warm support.
Mr. T. WILSON
I believe that the benefits supposed to accrue from this change have been greatly exaggerated, but as it is only for the perod of the War I shall not vote against it. I should like to suggest, however, that the Government should make the time synchronise with the time tables which the railway companies have already issued for the month of May.
§ Mr. H. SAMUEL
I think my hon. Friend misunderstands the proposal. The trains will run exactly at the times in the time tables.
What will be the position of men in munitions works who have to go an hour earlier when the clocks are put back? [HON. MEMBERS: "Put forward!"] Many men in munition works will not put their clocks back or forward, and the result will be that the first morning or two after the change comes into operation a large number of these men will be locked out. I think that more time should be given for the men to get accustomed to the new conditions. In many works men are fined if they are late. Therefore the Minister of Munitions and the Home Secretary ought to come to some arrangement with the firms for which these men work, so that no punishment shall be meted out to the men if they are late owing to this measure. In cotton mills, for instance, if men are not at the mill by six o'clock they cannot start work until after breakfast. That will occur in thousands of instances the first few days this change is in operation. I hope that arrangements will be made whereby inconvenience and loss to these people may be avoided.
§ Mr. SAMUEL SAMUEL
So far as the agricultural position is concerned we have heard from those who are able to give an opinion that the cows will give us our milk an hour earlier when this alteration is made, and the farmers will go to market an hour later. I am interested more in the industrial and mercantile position. We have at the present time, in many cases, offices open earlier in the summer 368 months voluntarily, but for the sake of upsetting the whole business of the world we are asked to consider the advisability of changing the clocks twice a year. One hon. Member has very rightly pointed out that immediately after the passing of this measure you will have a day of twenty-three hours. Who is going to lose one hour of the ordinary twenty-four which are worked in shifts in mines and in many industrial concerns? Somebody has got to lose the one hour's pay; is it the master, or is it the man? It may be that the community will gain very considerably by the decreased consumption of coal for gas and other purposes, but individuals will suffer, and probably the loss to the nation will be just as great as the gain. Again, in October, when you revert to the old time, you will have a day of twenty-five hours. Who is going to pay for the hour overtime? You have an eight hours' law in mines. Either the men in the mines will have to stop work for an hour or one of the shifts will have to work an hour longer. Are they to be paid for that hour at the overtime rate? If not, in what manner are they to be compensated?
There is also a serious matter which concerns the railway companies. You have long-distance trains, which leave at night and arrive at their destination in the morning. Take, for instance, trains between Scotland and England. Trains on the main line, which ordinarily arrive at seven or eight o'clock, will arrive at eight or nine o'clock. Those trains must interfere with the local and suburban traffic. Twice a year you will have the whole railway service disorganised by long-distance trains coming in just as the working classes are going to their work. The same thing applies to tramways and omnibuses, where the men leave off at half-past twelve or one o'clock in the morning. They will go off an hour in advance, and the public will be stranded. I hope the Home Secretary will provide for all these contingencies in his Bill. I do not suppose that the Government will be defeated over this matter, as it is put forward as a war measure; but if the system is to be continued after the War I would suggest that in future years it should come into operation at midnight on 31st March, so that when we found people who had been to the theatres and other places, going to catch their five minutes past twelve train, we should have the advantage of being able to tell them that it was five minutes past one on the, 1st of April.
§ Colonel YATE
I wish just to say that I have lived under this system for several years, and I should like to give my testimony that I know of no one who ever suffered by it. In India the time is always taken from the Madras Observatory. The capital of the province of which I had charge was some 900 miles distant, and the difference in time was 57 or 58 minutes, but we were able to live under that system all the year round without ever feeling any inconvenience from it. In England
§ it is proposed to have the change only in the summer. We did not find that it affected shipping in any way. The shipping at Bombay was never affected by the difference in time between Madras and Bombay. I think that the shipping in this country will be able to accommodate itself equally well. I am certainly in favour of the Resolution before the House.
§ Question put.
§ The House divided: Ayes, 170; Noes, 2.369
|Division No. 6.]||AYES.||[7.27 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Francis Dyke||Greenwood, Granville G. (Peterborough)||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)|
|Adkins, Sir W. Ryland D.||Gretton, John||Parker, James (Halifax)|
|Allen, Arthur A. (Dumbartonshire)||Griffith, Rt. Hon. Ellis Jones||Perkins, Walter Frank|
|Amery, L. C. M. S.||Gulland, John William||Phillips, Sir Owen (Chester)|
|Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark)||Harmsworth, Cecil (Luton, Beds.)||Pratt, J. W.|
|Barnes, Rt. Hon. George N.||Harris, Henry Percy (Paddington, S.)||Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.)|
|Beale, Sir William Phipson||Harris, Percy A. (Leicester, S.)||Pryce-Jones, Colonel E.|
|Beck, Arthur Cecil||Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)||Rea, Walter Russell (Scarborough)|
|Bellairs, Commander C. W.||Hazleton, Richard||Reid, Rt. Hon. Sir George H.|
|Bird, Alfred||Healy, Timothy Michael (Cork, N.E.)||Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)|
|Bliss, Joseph||Henderson, Rt. Hon. Arthur (Durham)||Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)|
|Bowerman, Charles W.||Henderson, Lt.-Col. Hon. H. (Ab'don)||Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)|
|Brace, William||Hewart, Gordon||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Brady, Patrick Joseph||Hinds, John||Rowlands, James|
|Bridgeman, William Clive||Hogge, James Myles||Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby)|
|Broughton, Urban Hanlon||Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield)||Salter, Arthur Clavell|
|Bryce, J. Annan||Houston, Robert Paterson||Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)|
|Butcher, John George||Howard, Hon. Geoffrey||Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir John Allsebrook|
|Buxton, Noel||Hudson, Walter||Smith, Rt. Hon. Sir F. E. (Walton)|
|Byles, Sir William Pollard||Hume-Williams, William Ellis||Smith, Harold (Warrington)|
|Carew, C. R. S.||Ingleby, Holcombe||Stanton, Charles Butt|
|Cave, Rt. Hon. Sir George||Jacobsen, Thomas Owen||Stewart, Gershom|
|Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich)||Jones, Edgar R. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Strauss, Arthur (Paddington, North)|
|Chaloner, Colonel R. G. W.||Jones, J. Towyn (Carmarthen, East)||Strauss, Edward A. (Southwark, West)|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. J. A.||Jones, William S. Glynn- (Stepney)||Swann, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles E.|
|Chancellor, Henry George||Jowett, Frederick William||Sykes, Sir Mark (Hull, Central)|
|Coates, Major Sir Edward Feetham||Joyce, Michael||Taylor, John W. (Durham)|
|Coats, Sir Stuart A. (Wimbledon)||King, Joseph||Tirrell, George (Wilts., N.W.)|
|Cochrane, Cecil Algernon||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)|
|Cooper, Sir Richard Ashmole||Lambert, Richard (Wilts., Cricklade)||Tickler, T. G.|
|Cornwall, Sir Edwin A.||Law, Rt. Hon. A. Bonar (Bootle)||Toulmin, Sir George|
|Cory, James H. (Cardiff)||Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, West)||Turton, Edmund Russborough|
|Craig, Col. James (Down, E.)||Layland-Barrett, Sir F.||Warde, Colonel C. E. (Kent, Mid)|
|Craik, Sir Henry||Lewis, Rt. Hon. John Herbert||Wardle, George J.|
|Crooks, Rt. Hon. William||Lloyd, George Butler (Shrewsbury)||Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)|
|Dalrymple, Hon. H. H.||Lockwood, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. A. R.||Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)|
|Dalziel, Davison (Brixton)||Lonsdale, Sir John Brownlee||Watson, Hon. W.|
|Dalziel, Rt. Hon. Sir J. H. (Kirkcaldy)||Lundon, Thomas||Weston. J. W.|
|Davies, David (Montgomery Co.)||MacCaw, William J. MacGeagh||Whitehouse, John Howard|
|Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth)||Mackinder, Halford J.||Whiteley, Herbert J.|
|Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.)||Maclean, Rt. Hon. Donald||Whittaker, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas P.|
|Davies, M. Vaughan- (Cardiganshire)||Macmaster, Donald||Whitty, Patrick Joseph|
|Denniss, E. R. B.||M'Micking, Major Gilbert||Wiles, Thomas|
|Dougherty, Rt. Hon. Sir J. B.||MacNeill, J. G. Swift (Donegal, South)||Williams, Aneurin (Durham, N.W.)|
|Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness)||M'Neill, Ronald (Kent, St. Augustine's)||Willoughby, Major Hon. Claud|
|Edge, Captain William||Magnus, Sir Philip||Wills, Sir Gilbert|
|Essex, Sir Richard Walter||Mason, David M. (Coventry)||Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Fell, Arthur||Middlemore, John Throgmorton||Wing, Thomas Edward|
|Fenwick, Rt. Hon. Charles||Molteno, Percy Alport||Worthington Evans, Major L.|
|Ferens, Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson||Mond, Rt. Hon. Sir Alfred Moritz||Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-|
|Field, William||Money, Sir L. G. Chiozza||Yate, Colonel Charles Edward|
|Fisher, Rt. Hon. W. Hayes||Moore, William||Young, William (Perthshire, East)|
|Flannery, Sir J. Fortescue||Morgan, George Hay||Younger, Sir George|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||Morison, Hector||Yoxall, Sir James Henry|
|Fletcher, John Samuel||Morton, Alpheus Cleophas|
|Gardner, Ernest||Neville, Reginald J. N.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.— Sir|
|Gilbert, J. D.||Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield)||Henry Norman and Mr. Peto.|
|Glanville, Harold James||Nolan, Joseph|
|Samuel, Samuel (Wandsworth)||Spear, Sir John Ward||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.— Sir|
|F. Banbury and Lord Hugh Cecil.|
§ Resolved, "That, in view especially of the economy in fuel and its transport that would be effected by shortening the hours of artificial lighting, this House would welcome a measure for the advancement of clock time by one hour during the summer months of this year."