HC Deb 26 May 1938 vol 336 cc1547-64

Resolution reported, That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to amend the Herring Industry Act, 1935, to authorise the giving of further financial assistance to the Herring Industry Board and to herring fishermen, and for purposes connected with the matters aforesaid, it is expedient—

(a) to authorise the payment out of moneys provided by Parliament—

  1. (i) in respect of the general administrative expenses of the Herring Industry Board (including the expenses of the Herring Industry Advisory Council constituted by the said Act and of any committee appointed by the Board), of sums not exceeding sixty thousand pounds;
  2. 1548
  3. (ii) in respect of such other expenses of the said Board as may be specified in the said Act, of sums not exceeding the amount which with the sums paid in respect of the general administrative expenses of the Board will amount to one hundred and twenty-five thousand pounds;
  4. (iii) of grants to herring fishermen, for the purpose of assisting in the provision of new motor boats which could not be provided without such assistance, so, however, that no grant in respect of any boat shall exceed one-third of the total cost thereof and the aggregate of the grants shall not exceed two hundred and fifty thousand pounds;
  5. (iv) into the Herring Fund Advances Account of such sums not exceeding in the aggregate one hundred and fifty thousand pounds, as may he required for the purpose of making advances to the Herring Industry Board towards their expenses in the exercise of their powers for the purposes mentioned in subsection (3) of section nine of the Herring Industry- Act, 1935, as amended by the said Act of the present Session;
  6. 1549
  7. (v) of remuneration to the members, officers, and servants of the consumers' committee and of the committee of investigation appointed under section four of the Herring Industry Act, 1935, and of such sums as may be necessary to defray the expenses of the said committees;

(b) to authorise the payment into the Exchequer of all sums received by way of interest on, or repayment of the principal of, any advance made to the said Board."

Resolution read a Second time.

Mr. Speaker

The Amendment standing in the name of the hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus)—In line i5, leave out "motor"—is not in Order.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."

11.24 p.m.

Mr. Boothby

I do not want to detain the House, but there are one or two aspects of this Measure which have to be dealt with, because we are not getting it in Committee upstairs, as we had at one time expected, and that means that it will not receive the same exhaustive treatment. While the general terms of the Bill and its financial provisions have been improved, I think it can be said, from the point of view of the bulk of the Scottish herring fishery, as the Minister is no doubt aware, that widespread disappointment has been caused by the fact that it fails to make any financial provision for the fishermen in the immediate future, in the interim period. What they asked and what they hoped to receive by this Bill was something to help them with their running expenses in the coming season when things are so difficult. This financial provision is for certain grants to fishermen under conditions which we examined in the Committee stage of the Bill and which will not come into operation till an appointed day, which I believe is not to be until December. The grants themselves are not unsatisfactory, but in the meantime the fishermen have to get through the forthcoming summer and autumn fishings as well as they can. Nothing in this proposal will help them to meet one of their greatest problems, that of running costs. I put down a Question the day before yesterday, asking the Government when they would consider the possibility of doing something to secure that bonâ fide fishermen should be able to purchase the coal which is essential for their steam drifters at some thing below the market price of 37s. per ton. The Bill contains no proposal enabling them to purchase coal more cheaply or in other ways to reduce their running expenses, and that is the cause of a considerable amount of disappointment. I would like my right hon. Friend to state whether, even at this late hour, it would not be possible to insert some form of financial provision into the Bill to assist fishermen to reduce their running costs in the immediate future, and that the Bill should not be confined entirely to giving, in respect to motor boats, grants which will not come into operation until December.

I should like to raise another point in respect of these grants, if it is in order. I believe it is, and there is no other way of raising it. I would ask the right hon. Gentleman whether it is possible to insert into the Bill provisions to make the grants for motor boats retrospective, even for a short period. The position is that a number of fishermen of enterprise and standing who have the credit facilities have actually built, or are having built to their order now, a certain number of motor boats of exactly the type covered by the Bill. I am sure I shall have him with me when I ask whether he thinks it is fair that these men, who have had the courage to go ahead on their own, having the credit at the bank, should be deprived of the benefits of the Bill. There are only five or six drifters concerned, and the concession for which I ask would cost but a negligible amount of money.

Mr. Speaker

The hon. Member cannot suggest anything which would increase the amount laid down in the Money Resolution.

Mr. Boothby

I was not aware of that. I bow to your ruling, Sir, that I am out of Order in asking that this grant be made retrospective. I think I shall be in Order in my last point. There is provision in the Bill which enables these grants to be made, provided that no other financial accommodation is available, or words to that effect. It looks at first sight something like a means test for these fishermen. The danger that some of us fear is an investigation into the means and standing of each fisherman who asks for a grant under the Bill. A good man who might be able to raise the necessary cash from his bank would not be able to get a grant, while the less good fisherman who had no credit facilities would be able to get a grant. I am sure my right hon. Friend will agree that that would not be fair, and I hope he may be able to give us some assurance.

11.30 p.m.

Mr. Loftus

I intervene bacause the Financial Resolution is so drawn as to strangle discussion in the Committee stage and prevent any reasonable Amendment to the Bill. I support the appeal of my hon. Friend the Member for East Aberdeen (Mr. Boothby) for some consideration of the question of the running costs of the fishermen. I understand that my Amendment to delete the word "motor" will not be called, but I would like to mention the question of the grant for motor vessels. I have looked up in the dictionary the definition of the word "motor," and I find that the Oxford Dictionary says it means: Machine supplying motive power for carriage or vessel. In view of that definition I would ask the Secretary of State whether the grant should not include vessels propelled by steam, which would come under the definition in the Oxford Dictionary. This is my last chance of making this appeal. I would point out to my right hon. Friend that the cost of vessels of the same size is approximately the same. In 1937 a Diesel-engined vessel 80 feet long cost £7,800, and a steam vessel 85 feet long cost £7,700. As regards running costs, I know that the present steam drifters are extremely expensive to run, and, therefore, a case can be made out on their account. But the present steam drifters are old boats. Recently an experiment at the National Physical Laboratory showed that one thing only, an alteration in the shape of the hull, reduced the cost of fuel by 25 per cent. That is one indication of what steam under modern conditions can do. Then, in Germany, producer gas from coke is being used for running some 25 ships up to 1,000 tons, and one of these ships showed a saving on fuel of £120 a year. That shows that there are economical modern methods which may produce a cheaper-running vessel than the Diesel.

It seems to me astonishing, in view of the fact that our fishing vessels are part of the national food production plant, that the Government should subsidise and encourage the running of part of our national food production plant on imported fuel rather than on fuel produced from coal. In wartime we might, owing to scarcity, find this important part of our food production partly immobilised for want of fuel. I submit that the mining interests in this House should carefully consider the fact that the drifter fleet uses approximately 150,000 tons of coal a year, and that in the national interest it is unwise to destroy that market and become more and more dependent on imported fuel.

I regret this Resolution. In the first place, I understand from my right hon. Friend that the subsidy will only go to small boats. That means that the whole of the East Anglian fishing is ruled out; it means that probably not 5 per cent. of the subsidy will come to England. In the second place, the English boats are more heavily in debt than the Scottish. The Duncan Report gave the indebtedness of the whole fleet as £580 per boat; in one port it was £1,800 per boat, and that was an English port. Therefore, the fleet that is most heavily in debt will not receive any financial help. I believe that unemployment is being caused at the ports by knocking out coal and using petrol instead. My final point is again to say how astonished I am that in this House of Commons, where we are making every possible preparation for war, we should be faced with this proposal tonight to increase our dependence, without any necessity, on imported fuel.

11.36 p.m.

Mr. Dingle Foot

I have just a few words to say about the form which this Money Resolution takes. In the last year or two we have had a great many animated debates on the form of Money Resolutions. On the Special Areas Bill, the Tithes Bill and other Measures there were protests from all parts of the House at the unnecessary particularity with which many Resolutions are drawn, because it is felt, and rightly so, that this method has the effect of gagging the House and preventing reasonable Amendments being moved. It will be within the recollection of the House that so strong were the protests that the Government were constrained to set up a Select Committee on the subject. That Committee reported, in effect, that the protests were justified, and they made certain recommendations. The Government did not carry out the recommendations, but in the debate we had on the subject earlier in the Session the Prime Minister gave an assurance that a circular had been sent round to the Government Departments responsible, and that it enjoined on those who draw up the Resolutions that they should be drawn as widely as possible, so as not to fetter the chances of Amendments being moved. It is quite clear that that instruction has been ignored in the case of the present Resolution, because in the Resolution there appear the words, "new motor boats". Why should that reference to motor boats be necessary in the Money Resolution?

In any case, both in the Resolution and in the Bill, there is a limitation of the amount to £250,000; so there can be no question of any increase in the charge. What is being done here, quite apart from the charge, is to put in this qualification, so that on the Committee stage it will be out of order for hon. Members representing herring ports to move that steam boats should be eligible for the subsidy in the same way as the other boats. That is entirely contrary to the instruction given a few months ago. It shows how useless these instructions are. Once again a deliberate attempt is being made to tie the hands of the House. It must be deliberate, because this matter about steam boats was raised in the debate on the Bill by several hon. Members —I know the hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus) expressed the hope that they were not to be ineligible. This Resolution is being brought forward after the Bill, and our hands are being tied by it. We ought to have some explanation from the Government as to the form the Money Resolution takes.

11.40 p.m.

Mr. Henderson Stewart

I think that most of us will join with the hon. Member for Dundee (Mr. Foot) in his protest against the close drafting of the Money Resolution. It is an old complaint in this House, and I imagine it will go on as long as our present methods continue. I join issue with the hon. Gentleman on the question of motor boats. I could with great pleasure enter into a debate with the hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus), but I do not want to do so at this late hour. I cannot imagine from what source he obtained his figures. In East Fife last year we built a 65 ft. motor diesel vessel for just over £3,000. It has been to Yarmouth, has taken part in the East Anglian fishing and has been very successful. A steam drifter of the same size, built to do the same kind of fishing, would cost about three times as much. There fore, as the expense of the diesel boat is only one-third of the steam boat, I am satisfied that it is proper to give this subsidy to motor boats at this time.

I rise merely to support my hon. Friend the Member for East Aberdeen (Mr. Boothy) in making a protest to the Government on account of their failure to appreciate the real and the immediate needs of the herring trade. I have pleaded for grants for motor boats for many years in this House. Although I would be the last to be ungrateful for what is being done now—" For what we are about to receive, may the Lord make us truly thankful," and I hope that we may be—none of the provisions in the Bill is likely to be of the slightest immediate advantage to the herring trade this year or, I think, next year. I beg of the Government to reconsider the whole Bill with a view to recognising facts and producing satisfactory remedies. Is the House aware that we are losing men at such a rate in the herring trade that in ten years time, if the present rate is continued, there will not be any men left at all for the herring drifters. We are losing boats at such a rate that, if it is continued, in five years' time, there will not be one steam drifter left in Scotland. These facts must be faced by the Government if we are to maintain this essential trade.

I thank the Government for this Measure as far as it goes, but I would be failing in my duty to my constituency if I did not make it abundantly clear, that it does not scratch the problem with which we are faced in the herring ports. That problem is one of making the herrings that we catch cheaper to sell. The only possible way that we can see of reducing their cost price is some grant towards expenses. My hon. Friend has suggested a loan to meet the increased cost of coal. I would like the basis chosen to be broader. I agree with the Herring Producers' Association and the deputation representing all sections of the trade which met the Government last year in asking for a grant of 25 per cent. covering all the many branches of expenses. The Minister refused that request and I now beg of him to reconsider the proposal most earnestly.

11.45 p.m.

Mr. Petherick

We have been listening to hon. Members representing Scottish constituencies. The trouble with them is that they are too greedy. Scotland is already getting the lion's share, under the Bill, of the £376,000 and on the top of that probably also £150,000 out of the Herring Fund Advances Account. I rise to make a plea on behalf of English Fishermen. It is a point which I raised on the Second Reading, and it is one of considerable importance. I am confirmed in that opinion by the fact that what I said has aroused a great deal of interest in Cornwall, and I understand also in Devon. The point was whether the advances to be made to herring fishermen are available for fishermen who catch herrings for part of the year, but not mainly for the whole year. In parts of Devon and certainly in Cornwall, there are men who go out during the winter months from November to, say, January, and catch herrings, and at other times they use their boats for catching pilchards, mackerel and, maybe, for fishing with long lines. It is important that it should be possible for them to obtain grants as part of their share of the money which is to be allocated for the building of boats. I have approached my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries on this matter, and he has promised to look into it. I hope that he will be able to assure the herring fishermen that in this financial Resolution, and also in the Bill, they are covered, because they are certainly not less deserving than the Scottish herring fishermen, although they fish for herring for only part of the year.

11.48 p.m.

Mr. Gallacher

The hon. Member for Penryn and Falmouth (Mr. Petherick) is very supercilious about Scottish Members. If he thinks that my intervention is undesirable, the door is there, and there is no reason why he should stay here and suffer in listening to me. I discovered that it was too late for me to put down Amendments on the Financial Resolution, and I decided to draft Amendments for the Committee stage because, although I have miners and agricultural workers in my constituency, I have also a certain number of herring fishermen. Therefore, I have tried to give some consideration to the herring industry. I drafted Amendments for the Committee stage, and then I learned that they are out of Order. One Amendment, to provide that "motor" should be deleted, was out of Order, so I was told. I also discovered that an Amendment to provide that the sum total of the grants should be increased to £500,000, would be extremely out of Order. I also had an Amendment that in addition to the grants for boats there should be grants made to meet the current needs of the fishermen. I was told that that was out of Order. Therefore, my activities to get in my Amendments in good time, have not been of much avail.

I take the opportunity of protesting against the Financial Resolution. It is obvious that the provision made in the Financial Resolution is not sufficient. Although the Government have been constrained to do something to help the herring fishing industry, the something they are doing is the absolute minimum. I am positive that a representative body of Government Members could not work out a plan of any kind that would give less to the herring fishermen. The method of allocation is simply tying the House of Commons hand and foot. We can think out the most effective way of distributing any money that there is to be distributed so as to be of the greatest advantage to the fishermen and, no matter how much thinking we may do, it is of no avail. Suppose we got meetings of fishermen at Lowestoft, on the Forth and at Aberdeen and discussed with them ways and means how the best possible use could be made of the money in order to meet their current needs, we come here and are told we are out of Order. It does not matter how bad and how dangerous is a proposal brought forward by the Government the Members behind them go into the Lobby as they are told. Here and there someone may get up and say a word or two to give the impression that he is free, but not a man dare stay out. With an automatic majority how is it possible to carry on the business of the country? [An HON. MEMBER: "What about Russia?"] I should like to divert a little.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Sir Dennis Herbert)

If the hon. Member means divert from what he was talking about back to the Resolution, I should have no objection.

Mr. Gallacher

That is very subtle. I dearly like subtle things, so I will accept your advice, Sir Dennis. I ask the House not to pass the Resolution. It is not only the Lowestoft fishermen. National interests are involved. The hon. Member for East Fife (Mr. Henderson Stewart) tells us the Government are only scratching at the problem. Stop this scratching at the problem and deal with it in an effective manner. Hon. Members cannot support this Money Resolution if they are genuine towards their constituents. I want a Financial Resolution which will give fishermen assistance now for running costs and for other necessities. Neither the hon. Member for East Fife, the hon. Member for East Aberdeen (Mr. Boothby), the hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus) nor the hon. Member for Dundee (Mr. Foot) can support the Resolution. There cannot be any neutrality in this matter. Let us have a Division. Why not? It is an offence against the fishermen to let the Government get away with this Resolution. They are a thousand times more important than the collection of oddities who occupy the Government's Front Bench. If I can get any assistance I am prepared to go to a Division. The hon. Member has referred to greedy Scotsmen. Englishmen have been robbing Scotsmen for several centuries; they have been flourishing at the expense of Scotsmen.

Mr. Loftus

The proper time to oppose was on the Second Reading. I did so, but perhaps the hon. Member was not present.

Mr. Gallacher

I opposed the Second Reading, and I want to oppose the Resolution now. The proper time to oppose is when the subject comes before us, whether it is on Second Reading or on Financial Resolution. If we defeat it the Government will have to bring in another. I ask the hon. Members not to encourage any scratching with this serious problem, but to force the Government to face it in a manner which the great services that the fishermen have given to the country deserve. I hope the Resolution will be withdrawn.

11.59 p.m.

Mr. J. J. Davidson

I think that the Government should make no exception at all and in dealing with this industry should deal with it as a whole and not with particular sections of it. There must be no selection. It cannot be proved that a particular part of the industry is suffering more than any other. The herring industry has been sadly neglected for many years, and hon. Members on all sides are doing their utmost to see that assistance is given to it. The hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus) cannot deny that if it was right to support this proposal on the Second Reading it is right that he should support it to its logical conclusion. Have the hon. Members who put this proposal forward done it merely with a view to making speeches that will impress their constituents, but not with a view to taking action that will help their constituents? If so, they do not truly represent their constituents; they are shadow boxers. They are not carrying out their Parliamentary duties as they should do.

Mr. Boothby

Both my hon. friend the Member for East Fife (Mr. Henderson Stewart) and I made it plain that we approved the Bill as far as it went, but regretted that it did not go further.

Mr. Davidson

If the hon. Members desire to impress the Government with the necessity of going further and go to the extent of placing their view in an Amendment on the Order Paper, and the Government refuse to accept that view, it is their duty to press the Government by voting against them. The hon. Members have agreed that the Government have not gone far enough; that means that in their opinion the Government are not doing sufficient in their view for the herring industry. All they do is to make rebel speeches, and then, when the Chief Whip shows his face, they run away with their tails between their legs. Is that carrying out their duty to their constituents? Are they merely playing with the problem as politicians, or are they prepared as representatives interested in the herring industry to carry their views to their logical conclusion? We want to let their constituents know that we are watching their members who are such rebels in words, but such quitters in action. In view of the great volume of criticism on this point and the brilliant speeches which have been made by these fighting members on the Government side on behalf of the herring industry, I suggest that the right hon. Gentleman should delay this question and give the House a bigger opportunity of discussing it. I ask that as one who desires to assist the herring industry.

12.5 a.m.

Mr. Harbord

I wish briefly to register a strong protest against the action of the Government in not conceding to the request of those who represent the herring fishing ports of Great Britain. It seems that the appeals that have been made have fallen on deaf ears. I shall feel it my duty to vote against the Financial Resolution. Having made a strong protest, I feel that it is logical that I should vote against proposals which will result in a number of boats in the port which I have the honour to represent going out of operation and a number of men losing their livelihood. The Government will not grant the necessary financial assistance for the working of these boats, although, in all, the assistance for which we have asked would not involve an expenditure of more than £160,000 by the Government. Is this great national fishing industry to go to the wall because the Government will not grant the necessary financial assistance? I must express my disappointment and disgust that the Government have not accepted the case which has been put so strongly. I welcome the action which has been taken by my hon. Friend the Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus), who has done his best for the fishermen of the port of Lowestoft. I make a last appeal to the Government to be more fair. This Bill is entirely a Scots Measure, and the English side of the industry has been neglected, apart from the provision for new boats.

12.8 a.m.

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. Colville)

The points that have been raised on the Report stage of the Money Resolution are substantially the points that were raised on the Second Reading of the Bill. On that occasion, I tried to demonstrate to the House why the Government had chosen to assist the industry in the way laid down in the Bill and the way provided for in the Money Resolution. At this time of night, I do not think the House would wish me to make my Second Reading speech over again, but perhaps I might underline that what I said on that occasion was that we recognised the difficulties from which the herring industry is suffering, difficulties mainly occasioned by the contraction of overseas markets; that we would do our best to secure for the British herring industry a share in those overseas markets, contracted though they were; and that by reconstituting the Board on. the lines which I explained, we believed a greater degree of efficiency could be obtained: but that, when all that was said and done, we felt that the best contribution we could make to the industry was to assist it in future in providing itself with efficient boats for the purpose of catching fish at a reasonable cost.

I also endeavoured to explain that we had deliberately selected the motor boat for this purpose. I know that my hon. Friend the Member for Great Yarmouth (Mr. Harbord) and my hon. Friend the Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus) have strong views on that subject, and I do not think I shall convince them: but I must say again that there were strong and cogent reasons which induced the Government to concentrate on re-equipment by means of new motor boats. We have studied the question carefully and have had in mind clearly the paragraph which was quoted by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Hillsborough (Mr. Alexander) from the Herring Industry Board's second report to the effect that the steam drifter is the most efficient machine for catching herrings at all seasons and in all regions, if used to full capacity. But we have also had to consider the claim of the advocates of the motor-boat, which is also dealt with in the report, that it is more economical in running and maintenance expenses, requires a smaller crew and could probably be used for fishing for white fish when no herring is available.

The report went on to say that it was anticipated that a number of those craft could be built in time for the season of 1937 and that, if experience could be gained of their performance, it would be possible to form an opinion of their capability and suitability for the herring industry. Experience of the performance of such boats since that report was written, justifies the conclusion which the Government have reached, that it is the right type of boat to assist by Government grant. Such boats have shown themselves capable of pursuing herring fishing off the East Anglian coast not only in 1937 but in previous years. In the earlier Debate the hon. Member for Lowestoft quoted a passage from the Duncan Report to the effect that it was admitted that there was not enough experience of the suitability of the Diesel drifters of the larger size that would be necessary for the more arduous work of herring fishing in open waters and rough weather, the capital cost of which would be at least as great as that of the steam drifters. That, however, was written in 1934 and considerable experience has been gained since then showing that the motor boat is an efficient instrument for herring fishing. While it is true that their catching power is less than that of efficient steam drifters, they are an economical proposition. The present fleet of steam dritters is unable to find full-time occupation, and it seems essential for the steam drifter to keep in full-time occupation in order to make it a paying concern.

This is an essential point in the Bill and, therefore, in the Money Resolution. Hon. Members have complained that the Money Resolution is drawn in such a way that, by using the word "motor," amendment and discussion on this point is precluded. As I have said, this is an essential part of the Bill and it was carefully explained in the discussion on the Bill, that we had chosen to concentrate our assistance on motor boats. The Committee stage of the Money Resolution passed without challenge and I think the majority of hon. Members at that time were convinced that the proposition which we made was based on a careful consideration of the advice given to us.

Mr. Foot

Why should not this question of motor boats or steam drifters be threshed out on the Committee stage of the Bill? Why should you draft the Money Resolution so as to rule out of order any Amendment in favour of steam drifters?

Mr. Colville

I cannot discuss that point now. This is the Report stage of a Resolution which received the King's Recommendation and passed its Committee stage and I have endeavoured to explain that the Government feel this to be an essential point in the Bill. I would remind hon. Members that, in this case, the Government are taking a new step and a great step by making grant available to the extent of £250,000. It is a step which was urged very strongly by the industry and, in taking that step, I think the Government were entitled to weigh up how they could best help the industry in the provision of efficient boats. Having weighed all the evidence, they came to the conclusion that they ought to devote the grant for this emergency period to the motor boat.

Most of the other points which have been raised can be discussed on the Committee stage of the Bill. The hon. Member for East Aberdeen (Mr. Boothby) raised a point which, as Mr. Speaker pointed out, could not be pursued on this occasion. The hon. Member for Lowestoft said that the whole of the East Anglian fishing would be ruled out. I do not think that is a correct view. I believe there will be a very considerable share for the East Anglians. The hon. Member for East Fife (Mr. Henderson Stewart) said grace for what he had received but asked for more. I have tried to explain that the Government, in considering how best to help the industry, decided against a running grant and in favour of a new Board, the continuance of loans for certain purposes, and the considerable use of grants for the provision of boats of an efficient type.

Mr. Boothby

Does my right hon. Friend rule out all hope of any consideration by the Government, of the possibility of reducing the price of coal to the fishing fleet?

Mr. Colville

I do not think I can discuss that point on the Money Resolution. I hardly think it would he in Order. I will certainly consider what my hon. Friend has said. I know the importance of this matter to the fleet. The hon. Member for Penryn and Falmouth (Mr. Petherick) raised a point as regards the eligibility of Cornish fishermen for the grant and whether they would not have to be exclusively engaged in the herring fishing industry, to qualify for the grant under the scheme. Of course, the scheme is not yet made but the personal view I am expressing now is that they would not have to be exclusively engaged in herring fishing to qualify for such consideration. With those observations and having in mind the full explanation given on the Second Reading, I hope the House will now agree to the Resolution.

Mr. E. J. Williams

Has the right hon. Gentleman considered the effect on the coal industry of permitting steam drifters to go out of commission?

Mr. Davidson

Could the right hon. Gentleman not withdraw this Resolution now, and allow us at a later stage to discuss the whole issue as between motorboats and steam drifters?

Mr. Colville

No, Sir. I could not hold out any hope of that being done. As for the point raised by the hon. Member for Ogmore (Mr. E. J. Williams), that is a consideration which, naturally, we have to bear in mind. I agree that anything which substitutes the burning of oil for the burning of coal is a matter to which we must pay great attention, but

The remaining Orders were read, and postponed.

It being after Half-past Eleven of the Clock upon Thursday evening, Mr.

I assure the hon. Member that it was examined and taken into account when we were considering how best to help the herring fishing industry.

Question put, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."

The House divided: Ayes, 76; Noes, 30.

Division No. 221.] AYES. [12.19 a.m.
Albary, Sir Irving Fremantle, Sir F. E. Munro, P.
Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead) Furness, S. N. O'Connor, Sir Terence J.
Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.) Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester) Petherick, M.
Anstruther-Gray, W. J. Grigg, Sir E. W. M. Ramsbotham, H.
Aske, Sir R. W. Grimston, R. V. Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)
Balniel, Lord Guinness, T. L. E. B. Reed, A. C. (Exeter)
Beaumont, Hon. R. E. B. (Portsm'h) Hambro, A. V. Reed, Sir H. S. (Aylesbury)
Boothby, R. J. G. Heilgers, Captain F. F. A. Reid, W. Allan (Derby)
Boulton, W. W. Hely-Hutchinson, M. R. Royds, Admiral Sir P. M. R.
Boyce, H. Leslie Higgs, W. F. Salt, E. W.
Briscoe, Capt. R. G. Hopkinson, A. Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)
Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham) Horsbrugh, Florence Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)
Bull, B. B. Hutchinson, G. C. Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)
Carver, Major W. H. Keeling, E. H. Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)
Clarke, Colonel R. S. (E. Grinstead) Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.) Thomas, J. P. L.
Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston) Locker-Lampson, Comdr. O. S. Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.
Colfox, Major W. P. M'Connell, Sir J. Wakefield, W. W.
Colville, Rt. Hon. John MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross) Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)
Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L. McKie, J. H. Watt, Major G. S. Harvie
Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C. Maclay, Hon. J. P. Wells, S. R.
Crowder, J F. E. Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R. Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)
Dugdale, Captain T. L. Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J. Young, A. S. L. (Partick)
Eastwood, J. F. Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)
Edmondson, Major Sir J. Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest) TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Errington, E. Moreing, A. C. Captain Arthur Hope and Lieut. Colonel Kerr.
Findlay, Sir E. Morris-Jones, Sir Henry
Fox, Sir G. W. G. Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.
Barr, J. Jenkins, Sir W. (Neath) Robinson, W. A. (St. Helens)
Benn, Rt. Hon. W. W. John, W. Silverman, S. S.
Bevan, A. Kelly, W. T. Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)
Burke, W. A. Kirby, B. V. Smith, E. (Stoke)
Cocks, F. S. Loftus, P. C. Stephen, C.
Dalton, H. Logan, O. G. Tinker, J. J.
Davidson, J. J. (Maryhill) Mathers, G. Tomlinson, G.
Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellly) Maxton, J. Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)
Griffiths, J. (Llanelly) Milner, Major J.
Hall, G. H. (Aberdare) Noel-Baker, P. J. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Harbord, A. Pritt, D. N. Mr. Foot and Mr. Gallacher.

DEPUTY-SPEAKER adjourned the House, without Question put, pursuant to the Standing Order.

Adjourned at Twenty-eight Minutes after Twelve o'Clock.