HC Deb 03 July 1919 vol 117 c1266

Order for Second Reading read.

The PRESIDENT Of the BOARD Of TRADE (Sir Auckland Geddes)

I beg to move, That the Bill be now read a second time. It is a short Bill, its object being to amend Section 1 of the Courts (Emergency Powers) Act, 1917, but though short it is not unimportant. It is designed to give power to the Court to deal with cases which otherwise might involve intolerable hardship where contracts have been entered into before the 1st January, 1917, and which are likely to be changed by a modification of conditions rendering it really impossible for them to be carried out in their original form. The Bill is intended to give discretion to the Court to set aside if satisfied and even to annul contracts. The measure has been strongly urged upon us by many traders who have examined the conditions very carefully and I feel sure in my own mind that the powers which are asked for under the Bill to be granted by Parliament will prove of the greatest use in preventing injustice in many cases and indeed almost intolerable hardship to members of the trading community.

Bill accordingly read a second time, and committed to a Standing Committee.