HC Deb 21 June 1921 vol 143 cc1289-90

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Finance (New Duties) Act, 1916, and the Finance Act, 1917, or the Finance Act, 1919, Entertainments Duty shall not be charged on payments for admission to any entertainment where the Commissioners are satisfied—

  1. (a) that the entertainment is provided by a society, institution, or committee for the purpose of encouraging or promoting the interests of agriculture, housing, transport, art, or any general industry; and
  2. (b) that the entertainment is an exhibition of the goods or articles represented by the society, institution, or committee providing such entertainment, and that no extraneous entertainment which would but for the provisions of this Section be subject to Entertainments Duty is provided in connection with such exhibition; and
  3. (c) that the net profits of such entertainment are devoted to the promotion and encouragement of the general interests and objects of the society, institution, or committee holding the entertainment, and are not and will not be distributed by way of dividend to any members of such society, institution, or committee.

(2) The Commissioners may make Regulations for carrying the provisions of this Section into effect.—[Sir W. Joynson-Hicks.]

Brought up, and read the First time.


I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

I have four new Clauses on the Paper, but I do not propose to move those which I know are subject to controversy, but will eliminate the first and the last. I am proposing to put the Clauses down on the Report stage, and will move the second which deals with the exemption of certain trade exhibitions from the Entertainments Duty. The object of this is to ensure that trade exhibitions which are really organised for the purpose of improving the trade of the country, and are not merely social entertainments, and where no profits are made personally but are all handed over to the trade organisation, and where no such extraneous entertainments such as cockfights or bands are given—that these should be exempted from the Entertainments Duty. I have included in this Clause agricultural shows, though I believe that agricultural shows have recently been favourably treated by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in this matter. In order to make that quite clear that agricultural shows are legally exempted from the Entertainments Duty I include them. The Clause is the result of a deputation which I introduced to the late Chancellor of the Exchequer. He received it quite favourably, and gave us an assurance that the proposal I now embody in the Clause should be considered favourably by the Exchequer. I hope my hon. Friend who represents the Exchequer will be able to accept the Clause as it stands or will move it in some similar form on the Report stage.


Most careful consideration has been given to the Clause as now moved by the hon. Member, and my right hon. Friend has come to the conclusion that it is necessary that something should be done in this direction. It is essential always to promote the interest of industrial expansion and development, and among the ways of doing it none can be more in the spirit of the present times than the promotion of such exhibitions as this. But there are one or two particulars in which difficulty will be found in settling the actual wording. If my hon. Friend will be content with an assurance that a Clause will be put down on Report embodying the principle of his Clause perhaps he will withdraw it.


I accept the suggestion the hon. Gentleman has made, and will look forward to seeing the new Clause.

Motion and Clause, by leave, withdrawn.