HC Deb 02 March 1931 vol 249 cc30-1
71. Mr. PYBUS

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that in consequence of the repeal of Sections 2 and 3 of the Moneylenders Act, 1900, by the Second Schedule to the Moneylenders Act, 1927, the register of moneylenders formerly kept at Somerset House and there open to public inspection has been discontinued, and that, no public register of moneylenders licensed under the Act of 1927 in fact exists; that no other means of ascertaining whether an individual is a licensed moneylender is now available to the public; and whether, for the protection of the public and, in particular, for the better enforcement of the penal provisions of the Moneylenders Acts, 1900 to 1927, he will cause such a register to be established?

The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the TREASURY (Mr. Pethick-Lawrence)

Prior to the Moneylenders Act, 1927, moneylenders were, subject to certain exceptions, required to register themselves at Somerset house. This system of registration was repealed by the Act of 1927, and, instead, persons wishing to trade as moneylenders can, again subject to certain exceptions, only do so if they secure certificates from the justices or other competent authorities, and take out Excise licences. My right hon. Friend does not consider that a re-enactment of the registration system would assist in the enforcement of the penal provisions of the relevant Acts.


Is the hon. Gentleman aware that previous to this Act, there was a register to which people might go in order to find out whether a moneylender was registered or not, and that to-day there is no such protection?


I think that that was the effect of my answer.