HC Deb 17 June 1936 vol 313 cc1082-4

(1) For the purpose of sub-paragraph (4) of paragraph 5 of the Second Schedule to the Finance Act, 1920 (which, as amended by the Seventh Schedule to the Finance Act, 1933, imposes an additional duty on goods vehicles if used for drawing a trailer), a farming implement not constructed or adapted for the conveyance of goods or burden of any description shall not be deemed to be a trailer when drawn by a goods vehicle chargeable with duty under sub-paragraph (a) of that paragraph (which as so amended relates to vehicles used for purposes of agriculture).

(2) This Section shall come into operation on the first day of January, nineteen hundred and thirty-seven.—[Sir J. Lamb.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

7.31 p.m.


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

I hope that the procedure on the last Clause is an augury of what may happen with regard to this Clause. I do not intend to detain the Committee, as hon. Members who have read the Clause will see that it is almost self-explanatory, that there is a long list of Clauses to be dealt with, and that the Chancellor has told us that he wishes to finish the Committee stage of the Bill to-night, most of us hope at a reasonable hour. However, if I do not say something about the Clause probably I may not be as successful as my hon. Friend who moved the previous Clause. At the present time farming implements which are drawn behind a motor vehicle are taxed as trailers. In the mind of most people a trailer means another vehicle which is being towed behind a motor driven vehicle and is, generally speaking, looked upon as being required for the conveyance of goods. When a trailer contains goods the reason for the extra tax is, that it is increasing the earning capacity of the motor vehicle to which it is attached. That is not the case in the matter of the farming implements referred to in this Clause. These are really implements of the agricultural industry which are conveyed from one field to another or for short distances and are attached to mechanically propelled vehicles. It was not the intention of the Act when it was passed to put a tax upon such trailers, but that has been the effect of the Act as it stands at present. I hope that the Chancellor of the Exchequer will see his way to accept the new Clause, because it will remove an anomaly and something which was not intended in the first place.

7.34 p.m.


I would like to thank my hon. Friend the Member for Stone (Sir J. Lamb) for drawing our attention to what is happening as regards the charging of trailer duty for these vehicles. As my hon. Friend has said, the purpose of the new Clause is to relieve farmers from the payment of duty in respect of farm vehicles used for drawing farming implements, particularly harrows and things of that kind. The loss to the Revenue, if we accept the new Clause will, I am informed, be negligible, and also, I believe that very few of these vehicles go along the public highway. In these circumstances, I ask the Committee to accept the new Clause.

Clause added to the Bill.