HC Deb 16 November 1934 vol 293 cc2305-8

I have further to acquaint the House that the Lord High Chancellor, being one of the High Commissioners, delivered His Majesty's Most Gracious Speech to both Houses of Parliament, in pursuance of His Majesty's Commands, as followeth:

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons,

The murder of the former Austrian Chancellor in July, and the assassinations of the King of Yugoslavia and of Barthou in October, profoundly shocked the world and evoked the deep sympathy of Myself and all my People. These tragedies undoubtedly caused a serious setback to movements then on foot for European appeasement, and I have therefore noted with satisfaction the untiring efforts which My Government have made in many directions to counsel moderation and promote more friendly relations between nations.

In continuation of the conversations which took place last summer, representatives of My Government are at present engaged in preliminary discussions with representatives of the Governments of the United States and Japan in preparation for the Naval Conference, which is due to take place next year. It is my earnest hope that their efforts may be attended with success, in order that the world may be spared the evil of unrestricted competition in naval armaments so effectively averted in recent years by the international engagements freely entered into by the parties concerned.

Two of My sons have been able to make visits during the present year to my Dominions overseas. The welcome which the Duke of Kent received during his recent visit to South Africa and that given to the Duke of Gloucester first in Ceylon and then in Australia have been a source of great pleasure to the Queen and Myself.

An Act has been passed making fresh provision for the administration of Newfoundland in accordance with the recommendations of the royal Commission on Newfoundland. A Commission of Government has been set up and will, I trust, succeed in restoring prosperity to the Island.

The Joint Committee of both your Houses, after patiently and assiduously examining the problem of the future government of India, have concluded their task, and their recommendations will shortly be before you. Seldom, if ever, has an enquiry covered a wider or a more important field, and I do not doubt that your Committee have discharged their duty in a manner worthy of the task entrusted to them.

Members of the House of Commons,

I thank you for the provision you have made for the public service.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons,

Notwithstanding the continuance of difficult conditions affecting international trade, the purchasing and saving power of my People has been strengthened and the national finances have so far improved as to justify a substantial alleviation of the burdens which were accepted three years ago.

The continued improvement in trade and employment among My People gives Me great satisfaction. I am especially pleased at the welcome expansion in the export trade of this country, which has been materially assisted by the trade agreements which have been concluded with a number of foreign States, and by the development of trade within the Empire on the basis of mutual preference.

I regret that unhappily some areas have not shared in this improvement and their special conditions are receiving the sympathetic attention of My Ministers.

I have given My assent to a Bill providing for the amendment of the unemployment insurance scheme and for the establishment of a system of 'unemployment assistance on a national basis.

Bills have received My assent providing for the amendment of the law relating to betting and gambling, for the prevention of incitement to disaffection, and for regulating the hours of employment of young persons in the distributive trades.

Measures have also been passed for meeting the situation arising from the long continued drought, and for assisting the livestock and dairy sections of the agricultural industry.

Bills relating to Scotland have received My assent providing for the acceleration of the provisions of small holdings, for the suppression of illegal trawling, and for the amendment of the Poor Law.

A number of other Measures of public utility have been passed into law.

I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your labours.

Then a Commission for Proroguing the Parliament was read in the House of Lords.

After which the Lord Chancellor said:

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons,—By virtue of His Majesty's Commission, under the Great Seal, to us and other Lords directed, and now read, we do, in His Majesty's Name and in obedience to His Majesty's Commands, prorogue this Parliament to Tuesday, the twentieth day of November, one thousand nine hundred and thirty-four, to be then here holden; and this Parliament is accordingly Prorogued until Tuesday, the twentieth day of November, one thousand nine hundred and thirty-four.

End of the Third Session (opened Tuesday, 21st November, 1933) of the Thirty-sixth Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in the twenty-fifth year of the Reign of His Majesty King George the Fifth.