HC Deb 10 February 1931 vol 248 cc310-5

I beg to move, in page 16, line 18, to leave out from the beginning to the word "without" in line 22, and to insert instead thereof the words: (5) The Minister may, after the date of the commencement of this Act, approve proposals and estimates submitted to him for the purposes of this section before that date, but where the land to which any proposals relate has been acquired before the first day of January, nineteen hundred and thirty-one, or is after the commencement of this Act acquired. This is an Amendment to make clear the power of the Minister to defray the losses incurred by local authorities in providing allotment gardens for unemployed persons. If a number of authorities wish to enter into contracts to purchase land for allotments, they can do so under this proposal.


I do not object to allotment gardens for unemployed persons, but I wish to protest against the financial precedent which appears to be created by this procedure. As I understand this Amendment, it gives retrospective sanction to expenditure which has been incurred lay local authorities on the authority of the Minister. I should like to have that point cleared up. I admit that this proposal is within the four corners of the scheme set out in the Bill, and it comes under the organisation which the Minister has created. After what the Minister has said I have a very strong conviction that this expenditure has only been incurred by the local authorities on the understanding that they would be repaid under the provisions of this Bill. I do not wish to discuss the point any further, but I desire to register a strong protest against the Amendment.


We have no information whatever As to the local authorities who have spent this money, as to the amount of money they have spent, or what commitments they have incurred.


We undertake by this Bill to provide seeds and fertilisers for allotment holders. I quite recognise the difficulties which have been pointed out.

Lieut.-Colonel Sir FREDERICK HALL

According to the arrangement now suggested, any Government in power can delegate authority to local authorities to do what they like. Practically the local authorities are being told that, although they may meet with a certain amount of opposition, the Government will be able to put that right. I have always been bitterly opposed to retrospective legislation, which is one of the worst things that can happen. I am entirely opposed to it, and I am particularly opposed to it when a Member of the Government takes power unto himself to say that this or that thing may

be done. In those circumstances what would be the position of the local authorities? Somebody would have to discharge their accounts, and are we to say that it the local authorities do not pay the Government will pay? I hope that what is now proposed will not be taken as a precedent, as I do not want anyone to be able in the future to say: "Such a thing was done on the 10th of February, 1931." It is on that account that I raise my protest, and I bitterly resent the action which has been taken by the Government.

Mr. R.. W. SMITH

I want to protest against this Clause. I do not want to take up the time of the Committee, but the Minister says that the reason for this Clause is largely because the sowing season is approaching. If the Government had introduced this Measure at a reasonable time, when we asked them for a Measure relating to agriculture, they would have been able to obtain a Measure in sufficient time to avoid the necessity for this Clause.

Question, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Clause," put, and negatived.

Question put, "That these words be there inserted."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 260; Noes, 144.

Division No. 142.] AYES. [8.1 p.m.
Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West) Buxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Elland) Glassey, A. E.
Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock) Caine, Derwent Hall- Gossling. A. G.
Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher Cameron, A. G. Gould, F.
Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigie M. Caps. Thomas Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro') Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.) Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)
Angell, Sir Norman Charleton, H. C. Granville, E.
Arnott, John Clarke, J. S. Gray, Milner
Aske, Sir Robert Cluse, W. S. Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)
Attlee, Clement Richard Cocks, Frederick Seymour Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro' W.)
Ayles, Walter Compton. Joseph Grilfiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)
Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bilston) Cove, William G. Groves, Thomas E.
Baldwin, Oliver (Dudley) Cripps, Sir Stafford Grundy Thomas W.
Barnes, Alfred John Daggar, George Hall, F. (York, W.R., Normanton)
Batey, Joseph Dallas, George Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)
Beckett, John (Camberwell, Peckham) Davies, E. C. (Montgomery) Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)
Bellamy, Albert Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton) Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)
Bennett, Sir E. N. (Cardiff, Central) Day, Harry Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)
Bennett, William (Battersea, South) Dudgeon, Major C. R. Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Zetland)
Benson, G. Dukes, C. Hardle, George D.
Blindell, James Ede, James Chuter Harris, Percy A.
Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret Edmunds, J. E. Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon
Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W. Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty) Hastings, Dr. Somerville
Broad, Francis Alfred Edwards, E. (Morpeth) Haycock, A. W.
Brockway, A. Fenner Egan, W. H. Heyday, Arthur
Bromfield, William Elmley, Viscount Hayes, John Henry
Bromley, J. Foot, Isaac Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)
Brooke, W. Forgan, Dr. Robert Henderson, Arthur, Junr. (Cardiff, S.)
Brothers, M. Gardner, B. W. (West Ham. Upton) Henderson, Thomas (Glasgow)
Brown, Ernest (Leith) George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea) Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)
Brown, Rt. Hon. J, (South Ayrshire) Gibbins, Joseph Herriotts, J.
Buchanan, G. Gibson, H. M. (Lanes, Mossley) Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)
Burgess, F. G. Gill, T. H. Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)
Hoffman, P. C. Maxton, James Shield, George William
Holline, A. Melville, Sir James Shiels, Dr. Drummond
Hopkin, Daniel Middleton, G. Shillaker, J. F.
Hore-Bellsha, Leslie Milner, Major J. Shinwell, E.
Horrabin, J. F. Montague, Frederick Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Hudson, James H. (Huodersfield) Morgan, Dr. H. B. Simmons, C. J.
Hunter, Dr. Joseph Morley, Ralph Sinclair, Sir A. (Caithness)
Isaacs, George Morris, Rhys Hopkins Sitch, Charles H.
Jenkins, Sir William Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh) Smith, Alfred (Sunderland)
John, William (Rhondda, West) Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.) Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)
Johnston, Thomas Mort, D. L. Smith, H. B. Lees. (Keighley)
Jones, F. Llewellyn- (Flint) Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent) Smith, Rennie (Penistone)
Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth) Motley, Sir Oswald (Smethwick) Smith, Tom (Pontefract)
Jones, J. J. (West Ham, S[...]vertown) Muff, G. Smith, W. R. (Norwich)
Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Muggeridge, H. T. Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip
Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W. Murnin, Hugh Sorensen, R.
Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston) Noel Baker, P. J. Stamford, Thomas W.
Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford) Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.) Stephen, Campbell
Kennedy, Rt. Hon. Thomas Oldfield, J. R. Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)
Kinley, J. Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston) Strauss, G. R.
Kirkwood, D. Oliver, p. M. (Man., Blackley) Sullivan, J.
Knight, Holford Owen, Major G. (Carnarvon) Sutton, J. E.
Lang, Gordon Palln, John Henry Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)
Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George Paling, Wilfrid Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)
Lathan, G. Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan) Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)
Law, Albert (Bolton) Perry, S. F. Tinker, John Joseph
Law, A. (Rossendale) Peters, Dr. Sidney John Toole, Joseph
Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge) Pethick-Lawrence, F. W. Tout, W. J.
Lawther W. (Barnard Castle) Phillips, Dr. Marlon Townend, A. E.
Leach, W. Picton-Turbervill, Edith Vaughan, David
Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.) Pole, Major D. G. Viant, S. P.
Leo, Jennie (Lanark, Northern) Potts, John S. Walkden, A. G.
Lees, J. Price, M. P. Walker, J.
Lewis, T. (Southampton) Pybus, Percy John Wallace H. W.
Lloyd, C. Ellis Quibell, D. J. K. Watkins. F. C.
Logan, David Gilbert Ramsay, T. B. Wilson Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)
Longbottom, A. W. Rathbone, Eleanor Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Longden, F. Raynes, W. R. Wellock, Wilfred
Macdonald, Gordon (Ince) Richards, R. Welsh, James (Paisley)
MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw) Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring) Welsh, James C. (Coatbridge)
McEntee, V. L. Rlley, Ben (Dewsbury) West, F. R.
McKinlay, A. Rlley, F, F. (Stockton-on-Tees) Westwood, Joseph
MacLaren, Andrew Ritson, J. White, H. G.
Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.) Romeril, H. G. Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)
Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan) Rosbotham, D. S. T. Williams, David (Swansea, East)
McShane, John James Rowson, Guy Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)
Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton) Samuel, Rt. Hon. sir H. (Darwen) Williams, T. (York. Don Valley)
Mander, Geoffrey Is M. Sanders, W. S. Wilson. C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)
Mansfield, W. Sawyer, G. F. Wilson, J- (Oldham)
Marcus, M. Scott, James Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)
Markham, S. F. Scrymgeour, E. Winterton, G. E.(Leicester,Loughb'gh)
Marley, J. Scurr, John Wood, Major McKenzie (Banff)
Marshall, Fred Sexton, Sir James
Mathers, George Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston) TELLERS FOR THE AYES.
Matters, L. W. Sherwood, G. H. Mr. Ben Smith and Mr. Thurtle.
Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel Cayzer, Maj.Sir Herbt. R. (Prtsmth.S.) England, Colonel A.
Ainsworth, Lieut.-Col. Charles Chamberlain, Rt.Hn. Sir J.A.(Birm.,W.) Erskine, Lord (Somerset,Weston-s.-M.)
Albery, Irving James Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston) Everard, W. Lindsay
Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W. Chapman, Sir S. Falle, Sir Bertram G.
Atkinson, C. Christle, J. A. Ferguson. Sir John
Balfour, George (Hampstead) Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer Fermoy, Lord
Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H. Clydesdale, Marquess of Fielden, E. B.
Bellairs, Commander Carlyon Cobb, Sir Cyril Fison, F. G, Clavering
Bevan, S. J. (Holborn) Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George Ford, Sir P. J.
Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman Cohen, Major J. Brunel Forestler-Walker, Sir L.
Bird, Ernest Roy Colville, Major D. J. Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.
Boothby, R. J. G. Courtauld, Major J. S. Galbraith, J. F. W.
Bourne, Captain Robert Croft. Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L. Gibson, C. G. (Pudsey & Otley)
Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart Cranborne, Viscount Gower, Sir Robert
Boyce, Leslie Crichton-Stuart, Lord C. Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)
Bracken, B. Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H. Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.
Braithwalte, Major A. N. Crookshank, Cot.H.(Lindsey,Gainsbro) Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)
Briscoe, Richard George Dalkeith, Earl of Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.
Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'l'd., Hexham) Dalrymple-White, Lt.-Col. Sir Godfrey Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)
Brown, Brig.-Gen.H.C.(Berks, Newb'y) Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset,Yeovil) Hanbury, C.
Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T. Dawson, Sir Philip Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry
Campbell, E. T. Dixon, Captain Rt. Hon. Herbert Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)
Carver, Major W. H. Duckworth, G. A. V. Haslam, Henry C.
Castle Stewart, Earl of Dugdale, Capt. T. L. Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.
Cautley, Sir Henry S. Edmondson, Major A. J. Hope, Sir Harry (Forfar)
Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City) Elliot, Major Walter E. Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney,N.)
Iveagh, Countess of Peaks, Capt. Osbert Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton) Penny, Sir George Somerville, D. G. (Willesden, East)
Kindersley, Major G. M. Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings) Southby, Commander A. R. J.
Lamb, Sir J. Q. Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple) Stanley, Lord (Fylde)
Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak) Ramsbotham, H. Sucter Rear-Admiral M. F.
Leighton, Major B. E. P. Rawson, Sir Cooper Thomson, Sir F.
Lewis, Oswald (Colchester) Reid, David D. (County Down) Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
Llewellin, Major J. J. Remer, John R. Todd, Capt. A. J.
McConnell, Sir Joseph Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell Train, J.
Macquisten, F. A. Ruggles-Brise, Lieut.-Colonel E. A. Wallace, Capt. D. E. (Hornsey)
Makins, Brigadier-General E. Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth) Ward, Lieut.-Cot. Sir A. Lambert
Merriman, Sir F. Boyd Salmon, Major I. Wardlaw-Milne, J. S.
Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham) Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham) Warrender, sir Victor
Mitchell-Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart Waterhouse, Captain Charles
Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B. Savery, S. S. Wayland, Sir William A.
Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr) Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittome Wells, Sydney R.
Morrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester) Simms, Major-General J. Windsor-Cilve, Lieut.-Colonel George
Muirhead, A. J. Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's U., Belfst) Withers, Sir John James
Nelson, Sir Frank Skelton, A. N. Womersley, W. J.
Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge) Smith, Louis W. (Sheffield, Hallam) Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley
O'Connor, T. J. Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)
O'Neill, Sir H. Smithers, Waldron TELLERS FOR THE NOES.
Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William Somerset, Thomas Captain Margesson and Captain Sir George Bowyer.

Question put, and agreed to.

Clause, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.