HC Deb 04 July 1938 vol 338 cc37-8
66. Mr. Benjamin Smith

asked the Home Secretary whether he can now inform the House of the personnel of the Departmental Committee to be set up to inquire into the grievances of the London taximeter-cab drivers, the terms of reference, and the date of the first meeting?

Sir S. Hoare

I am glad to be able to announce that Sir Clement Hindley has accepted an invitation from my right hon. Friend the Minister of Transport and myself to act as Chairman of this Committee, and the hon. Members for Sowerby (Mr. McCorquodale), Pembroke (Major Lloyd George) and Rothwell (Mr. Lunn) together with Councillor J. H. Meachin of Manchester, have accepted invitations to serve on the Committee. The terms of reference of the Committee will be as follows: To review, first as regards London and secondly as regards other places in England and Wales, the legal provisions applying (a) to hackney carriages licensed to ply for hire and (b) to motor vehicles not so licensed which, not being public service vehicles, are used for carrying passengers for hire or reward (i.e., 'private hire' vehicles), to consider what services are or should be provided by each of the two classes of vehicle, and to report whether any changes in the existing law and procedure are desirable. As is indicated by the terms of reference, I propose to ask the Committee to deal first with the London position and to consider whether it is practicable to make any recommendation as regards London in advance of their other recommendations.

It will be for the Committee to settle the date of their first meeting.

Mr. Smith

While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his reply, can he tell the House whether the Committee will report before the Adjournment for the Autumn Recess.

Sir S. Hoare

I cannot give that undertaking before the Committee actually meet, but I know that they and I regard the question as one of considerable importance.

Mr. Thorne

Is it intended that the Committee should issue an interim report?

Sir S. Hoare

If the hon. Member will read the answer which I have given, he will see that that is the suggestion which I have made to the chairman of the Committee.

Mr. Sorensen

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether it is possible to have some kind of report regarding the position in London before the Summer Recess?

Mr. De la Bère

Can anyone really tell me what the Government's agricultural policy is?