HC Deb 13 December 1928 vol 223 cc2312-3
11. Commander BELLAIRS

asked the Home Secretary whether the Government will consider the question of issuing licences for lotteries in aid of hospitals, charities, etc., in view of the differences of police action in various parts of the country since various decisions in the High Court as to Lottery, Gaming, and Betting Acts?


All public lotteries are unlawful, whether for charity or otherwise, and I have no authority to grant exemption from the law. This would require fresh legislation.

Commander BELLAIRS

My question asked whether the Government will consider legislation; and will the right hon. Gentleman bear in mind that the advent of the Betting Duty, recognising betting, almost compels the Government to legislate on this matter?


It is one of the matters I am considering very seriously.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that most of the anomalies are anomalies of administration rather than of legislation and will he do something to remove the administrative anomalies?


If the hon. and gallant Member will tell me where the administrative anomalies arise, I will pay attention to them.

Lieut. - Commander KENWORTHY

Is it correctly reported that the right hon. Gentleman has made a bet on the next election?


I saw it in the paper.


Is not the difficulty about getting on the broad path that of being able to stop?

12. Commander BELLAIRS

asked the Home Secretary whether his attention has been drawn to the police notice issued by the Chief Constable of Maidstone, stating that criminal proceedings will be taken against anyone printing, publish- ing, conducting, or in any way taking part in selling any ticket or chance in any lottery, draw, Christmas draw, lucky dip, etc., that it is no defence to any proceedings that the object intended to be assisted is a charity or a hospital; and, in view of the reaction of a meticulous enforcement of law on the efficiency and discipline of police, whether he can offer any guidance, as was done in the case of whist drives, in regard to draws and lucky dips?


My lion. and gallant Friend has sent me a copy of the notice. The notice was not issued at my instigation, and I have no responsibility for it. No such notice has been issued by the police for whose action I am responsible, and my hon. and gallant Friend must complain to the local authority.

Commander BELLAIRS

Could not the right hon. Gentleman advise chief constables, where the law is in flagrant opposition to public opinion, that they should only act with the unanimous opinion of their watch committees?


That is the whole point. The chief constables of the counties and the boroughs are responsible, not to myself, but to their watch committees, and the remedy I suggest to my hon. and gallant Friend is to communicate with the watch committee to see whether they do concur in the notice which has been issued.

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