HC Deb 30 June 1919 vol 117 cc585-6
4 and 5. Mr. RAMSDEN

asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) if he will ask the Railway Executive to consider their decision not to extend cheaper fares for children to the juvenile friendly societies; whether he is aware that, as the privilege is limited to schoolchildren, the only alternative is to make all such juveniles into Sunday-school scholars for the day; (2) whether he is aware that under the official regulations regarding the issue of cheap fares to children the Railway Executive decision excludes from its benefits all such organisations as Pearson's Fresh Air Fund, which exists to carry poor children in general into the country, but who naturally do not fulfil the official condition of belonging in bulk to any particular educational institution; and whether the terms of the regulations will be reconsidered in this respect?


I would refer the hon. Gentleman to the reply given on this subject on the 5th June to the hon. Member for North Lambeth (Mr. Briant) and the hon. Member for Rotherhithe (Mr. Lort-Williams), of which I am sending him a copy. The question whether the concessions recently granted in the case of recognised school excursions can be extended is a difficult one, but it is being carefully examined.


Will the hon. Gentleman consider the case of fathers of large families who find it utterly impossible to take their children on account of the increased railway fares? Will he issue a family ticket?


The whole question is being examined, and we have to make some definite rules which will have to be observed. It would be a dangerous thing to make exceptions in particular cases.


Will the hon. Gentleman endeavour to come to some decision before the summer months are over, and make a statement in a week's time?


I will make a statement as soon as I can, but at present the only statement that I can make is that we cannot see our way to make exceptions of that kind.


Can these concessions be extended to Boy Scouts' Associations?


There are several questions on that subject down upon the Paper.