HC Deb 06 October 1938 vol 339 cc485-99

Motion made, and Question proposed, That this House, at its rising this day, do adjourn till Tuesday, 1st November; provided that if it is represented to Mr. Speaker by His Majesty's Government that the public interest requires that the House should meet at any earlier time during the Adjournment, and Mr. Speaker is satisfied that the public interest does so require, he may give notice that he is so satisfied, and thereupon the House shall meet at the time stated in such notice and the Government Business to be transacted on the day on which the House shall so meet shall, subject to the publication of notice thereof in the Order Paper to he circulated on the day on which the House shall so meet, be such as the Government may appoint, but subject as aforesaid the House shall transact its business as if it had been duly adjourned to the day on which it shall so meet, and any Government Orders of the Day and Government Notices of Motions that may stand on the Order Book for the 1st day of November or any subsequent day shall be appointed for the day on which the House shall so meet."—[The Prime Minister.]

11.49 a.m.

Mr. Attlee

I do not wish to raise a long debate on this Motion. Everybody realises the great strain there has been on the Prime Minister and that he needs a rest, but there are other Ministers beside the Prime Minister, and I think it is important that this House should be kept in Session. The events that are proceeding in Central Europe to-day are being followed with great anxiety by this country, and with increasing disturbance of mind as reports come through. It is a mistake that this House should depart while matters are in such jeopardy, and it is desirable that we should keep the closest watch on events and get the fullest amount of information. I think that this House, although it may be tired, should have regard to the fact that it has its responsibilities and that we have taken on new responsibilities, whether by the guarantee which is to be embodied in a treaty, or whether under what we may call the moral guarantee which has been assumed on behalf of this country by the Prime Minister, and we ought to be here and watchful, doing our business. There is plenty of business to be done. While the Prime Minister is having his rest the House should continue to sit.

11.51 a.m.

Sir Archibald Sinclair

I am very sorry that I was out of order when I was referring to this matter earlier. It seems to me that the Prime Minister and certain other Ministers should have a rest, and it is necessary that the heads of Departments should adjust themselves to the new, and, I am afraid, still rapidly changing situation, but on the other hand I feel great sympathy and a very large measure of agreement with the plea which the Leader of the Opposition has just put forward that Parliament ought not to allow the control of this situation, as far as it can control it, to slip out of its hands. Many Members on all sides of the House, and many people not in the House of Commons or in Parliament said to me during the recent crisis that it was a great pity that Parliament was not in being and that the moulding and expression of opinion was left to the newspapers, with their necessarily inadequate sources of information, and with the impossibility for them of questioning Ministers and clarifying the real issues.

I was speaking only yesterday to one of the big men in the newspaper world, and he said that it was his experience that the events of August and September when Parliament was in recess threw an altogether unfair responsibility upon those who control newspapers, because they themselves found the greatest difficulty in giving guidance to public opinion without the advantage of debates and the clarifying of issues in the House of Commons, in this democratic assembly, whose duty it is to the people of this country to carry out these functions. These points of view—on the one hand the necessity for certain Ministers to rest and the heads of Departments to adjust themselves to the new situation, and, on the other hand, the necessity for Parliament to keep some control of the situation—could be met if we adjourned now for 10 days and met again on Tuesday, 18th October, for two days, to discuss then the situation as we find it and then to decide whether or not to sit on. My suggestion is that we should not take ordinary business until the beginning of November, but that we should meet on Tuesday, 18th October, to consider the situation as it then stands and decide how long it will be necessary to remain in session.

11.54 a.m.

Major Milner

I should like to add my voice to what has been said by the Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the Liberal Opposition. In my opinion there has been a gross constitutional breach by His Majesty's Government in making a complete change in the foreign policy of this country without the authority of Parliament. I am not aware that there is any precedent in history for that course having been adopted, particularly when the Prime Minister was asked by the Leaders of the two Opposition parties to call Parliament together. For that very reason I hope the House will insist on remaining in Session or fix an earlier date than 1st November for meeting. Obviously, matters are changing from day to day and almost from hour to hour. I feel confident that the people of this country, in the first place, think that Parliament ought to have been called together at an earlier date than was the case, and that public opinion will agree that it is essential and necessary for Parliament to continue to sit, or to meet at a much earlier date than 1st November. It seems to me that there is something lacking in the procedure or in the constitution of Parliament, as there appear to be no means, such as exist in the case of limited companies and other bodies, whereby a substantial minority of the Members may demand the recall of Parliament. The recall of Parliament depends entirely on the initiative of the Government, and in this case I think they have departed from an age-long tradition. The House should insist on continuing to sit, or to meet at a much earlier date.

11.56 a.m.

Mr. Wedgwood Benn

As the Chancellor of the Exchequer is now present may I put to him with the greatest respect the point I put to the Prime Minister some time ago. We all want to grant this sum of £10,000,000 to Czechoslovakia, but at the present moment it is being done under note of hand by the Chancellor of the Exchequer without hon. Members having had an opportunity of giving, as we should, unanimous assent in some form of a Resolution. For one whole month the £10,000,000 credit will be owing to the Bank of England with no sort of statutory basis whatever, and the same practice if persisted in might be used for quite other purposes. I would like to ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether it is not possible in some way to register the approval of this House in order that the Bank of England may be free from any penalty under Section 30 of the Act of 1694 which says that if they lend money without statutory authority the directors are themselves personally responsible for treble the amount they have lent?

11.58 a.m.

Miss Rathbone

The sum of £10,000,000 has been described by the Prime Minister as an advance but may I remind the House that the sum mentioned by President Benes was £30,000,000. The problem is this. The Prime Minister has said that before the final sum can be fixed much more must be known. Events are moving very quickly, and it may be that before 1st November it will be necessary to make a further advance. I am much more concerned in getting as much for Czechoslovakia as is possible than with the point of procedure, and, therefore, I should like to know whether there is any way in which the House can consent to this sum of £10,000,000 and at the same time indicate that a sum of £30,000,000 is to be given to Czechoslovakia before we meet again?

11.59 a.m.

Mr. Harold Macmillan

I think I am entitled to support the compromise put forward by the right hon. Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair). There was a feeling in many parts of the country that the House should have been called together earlier, and they will be rather shocked at the idea that Parliament is not to be in session during a period which will probably be more grave and critical than at any time in the long history of this country. I understand entirely that Ministers must be given repose after their tremendous efforts, especially those who have had the chief conduct of these terrible affairs, but I think the compromise meets the case. Other Ministers we believe to be equally exhausted by the moral strain of resigning in the morning and withdrawing their resignation in the evening. There seems to me to be a curious and dangerous tendency in this country for evil communications to corrupt good manners. We are being treated more and more as a kind of Reichstag to meet only to hear the orations and register the decrees of the government of the day. If I might parody a famous Motion once debated here with very good results upon the country, the power of the Patronage Secretary has increased, is increasing and ought to be diminished.

Events are moving very rapidly, far more rapidly than some people realise. The whole financial structure of Czechoslovakia is on the point of collapse, and it is doubtful whether a sum of the character of £10,000,000 can save the banking and financial structure of the country. There are other equally rapid results taking place which will affect, not our late allies and friends but ourselves. A formidable attack has already been launched on the export trade of England The "Times"—by a strange dualism, the editor does not seem to read his foreign correspondents' messages—prints the most formidable accounts of what is already taking place under a new plan, and a most dangerous plan, which is being concocted against this country. An economic attack on the export trade of England is coming with the vastly increased power of our competitors operating under a wholly different system of complete control without regard to profits, and selling without regard to cost. These are questions which Parliament should be called to meet and take rapid executive decisions if something is still to be saved out of the dangerous position we have reached. By going away and not meeting until 1st November, it means that this year will be treated as a normal year, with three months' holiday only interrupted by the last few days. We shall preserve the ordinary system of our parliamentary life but we shall tend to increase the dangerous feeling that the whole thing is over, that we have "peace in our time," that we need not bother any more but revert to the normal structure of our life whereas, in fact, I say honestly from the bottom of my heart that I think the situation with which we are faced to-day in this country, with which the world is faced, and with which freedom, justice and liberty are faced, is more dangerous and more formidable, more terrible than at any time since the beginning of Christian civilisation.

12.5 p.m.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Sir John Simon)

It might, perhaps, be convenient if I were to deal, in a few sentences, with the points put to me very clearly by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Gorton (Mr. Benn). The right hon. Gentleman called attention to the method that has been adopted in consequence of which the Bank of England is providing a credit of £10,000,000, of which the House knows. I agree that the method that has been adopted is one that should be adopted only in circumstances of real urgency. One ought to regard it as being an entirely exceptional procedure. It is desirable in all cases which are not of that exceptional character that we should get Parliamentary authority in advance for any step of that kind.

At the same time the House must appreciate exactly what has been done. There is nothing in what has been done which raises a constitutional objection. What has happened is that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, on behalf of the Government, has asked the Bank of England whether it would provide this credit, and the only further thing that has been stated is that when Parliament resumes, the Government will present to Parliament the necessary Measure which, if Parliament adopts it, will provide that sum from the public funds. It is for the Bank of England to say whether, in those circumstances, it will or will not advance the money. No public fund has been pledged, and no payment has been made out of the Consolidated Fund, or can be made, until, of course, Parliament decides whether it will authorise the Government to act. Naturally, I trust and believe Parliament will authorise that, and I am sure that everybody agrees with the remark of the right hon. Gentleman when he said that it was our universal wish. There is nothing unconstitutional or unprecedented in such a proceeding. It has arisen in the past from a number of different reasons; in fact, it arose earlier this year when I had to announce in the course of my Budget speech that we had taken certain steps which would need Parliamentary authority in connection with food storage.

Mr. Benn

There are no other precedents, except the Suez Canal.

Sir J. Simon

The right hon. Gentleman is very confident about there being no other precedents. I am not so sure. I want the House to understand that there is nothing in the least unconstitutional or irregular; it is extremely exceptional, and I should regard it as most disastrous to our proceedings if it were not regarded as being of an entirety exceptional character. There is nothing whatever in the point that it would be all right if we met in a fortnight's time and passed legislation and all wrong if we met on 1st November. The right hon. Gentleman has made researches, and we all admire his keenness in this matter. I understood him to refer to Section 30 of the Charter Statute of 1694. I do not profess to carry all these things in my head, but I asked the Solicitor-General to go to the Library and look the matter up; and he informs me that the Charter Statute in force has not got a Section 30 in it. The date is 1844, but that happens to be exactly a century and a half after the year which the right hon. Gentleman quoted.

Mr. Benn

I consulted the authorities of the House and I looked up the Statute. The right hon. Gentleman will find a Section marked XXX in Roman figures. If the right hon. Gentleman and the Solicitor-General are right in detail, then I have made a mistake. However, I wish to put a question to the Chancellor. Let us take two events of varying probability. Suppose that the Government should call an election, and suppose that they should be defeated, what would happen to the Bank of England in that case?

Sir J. Simon

If I give full credence to some of the declarations made by hon. Members opposite, the Bank of England will suffer something very severe indeed.

12.10 p.m.

Mr. Graham White

I wish to ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will give the House some information with regard to the terms of this credit. There is one point which seems to me to be substantial and relevant. This credit has been made, and I understand it is now being acted upon. Parliament will discuss the matter and may very well wish, in making a credit of £10,000,000, to know whether it is a free and unconditional credit, and whether the Czechs can draw upon it and use it for any purpose which they may think fit. That is a matter on which the House is entitled to have information, for it might very well be that the money might be used for purposes which might mean putting it in the hands of the invading forces from Germany. It might be that the money would be disposed of in some way which the House would not approve. I should be glad if the Chancellor would give some information on this point.

12.11 p.m.

Sir J. Simon

I think I follow the point put by the hon. Gentleman, but in reply I would remind him and the House that the body that makes the advance is not the Government, but is the Bank of England. It is the Bank of England that we have requested to provide that sum and it is a fact that, as the hon. Gentleman said, the Bank of England is providing it, I believe, as a sterling credit in London in favour of the Czechoslovak Government. That is not the provision of any credit by the Government. It cannot be. The Bank of England understands that perfectly well. It is the provision of a credit by the Bank of England—

Mr. Lloyd George

Is it unconditional?

Sir J. Simon

The position is just as I have stated. We requested the Bank of England to provide a credit of £10,000,000, and it is, as a matter of fact, sterling in London in favour of the Czechoslovak Government. I agree that when we come to consider the terms of any Bill which is presented to authorise its incorporation in any larger scheme, it may very well be that we shall have to consider exactly what it is we are meaning to do; but by common consent, this is a most urgent matter which did not call for a moment's delay. It would have been a cruel thing to discuss all these niceties when the credit was needed so quickly. I think the House as a whole approved at the time, as I think it still does, that we should ask the Bank of England whether it was prepared to do this on no other assurance than that on 1st November we would present a Bill to the House and invite the House to give its assent.

12.14 p.m.

Dr. Haden Guest

I want to appeal to the Prime Minister, using the words that were used yesterday by the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he spoke of the new policy of sweet reasonableness.

Sir J. Simon

I did not use those words.

Dr. Guest

They have been used. I apologise if I attributed sweet reasonableness to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. I suggest seriously that it would give a feeling of confidence and calm to the nation if Parliament were sitting. I have been in the closest touch during the days of emergency with a very large number of people belonging to the ranks of the Civil Service, the higher professional ranks, scientific people and others who were extraordinarily perturbed by the fact of Parliament not being in Session. I believe that if Parliament were in Session, if there were an opportunity existing of questions being asked and answers given, that would give a feeling of security to the country; and I do urge very strongly that this decision to adjourn till 1st November be altered and that at least the compromise suggested by the Leader of the Liberal Opposition be accepted. A rest is urgently needed for medical reasons as well as others perhaps.

12.17 p.m.

Mr. Churchill

May I add my plea to the Prime Minister that he will consider the very reasonable request of the Leader of the Liberal party that we should go away for ten days and meet on the 18th for a day or two? After all, we are passing through a period of very rapid daily change in Europe of the most disturbing character, and it does not seem quite right that Parliament should go away for 25 days as if nothing was going on and as if it had lost interest in matters which affect the whole future of this country. It is derogatory to Parliament, it seems to me, that it should be thought unfit as it were to be attending to these grave matters, that it should be sent away upon a holiday in one of the most formidable periods through which we have lived. I know that there is a certain under-current of derision of Parliament even among its own Members, and a feeling no doubt among Ministers "What relief it will be when we have got them sent about their business and we can get on with our work." That is exactly the idea which in other countries has led to the institution of dictatorships, the same process of impatience with the parliamentary machine which has swept it away and has led to its replacement by one-man rule.

Why, we even hear that the Cabinet is undergoing rapid modification, that only a few were consulted in matters of consequence, the rest being brought in from time to time only to register decisions in respect of matters of which they had only partial cognisance and being told that certain matters were being settled. That is an additional reason why Parliament should not be separated far and wide when these matters are being dealt with by what are called the Big Four. That is so widely felt in the country that it is not right that we should not be called together again. It is too long to wait until 1st November. We do not know what will happen by then. I hope that the Prime Minister, who, after all, is the head of a democratic State and is the champion and Leader of this House, of one of the surviving parliamentary democracies, will see that it is not an unfair or unreasonable request to ask that on Tuesday, the 18th, we are called together to survey the situation as it may exist at that time.

12.20 p.m.

The Prime Minister (Mr. Chamberlain)

It will be remembered that the original plea of the Leader of the Opposition was that Parliament should continue to sit and that it was based on four considerations which he put to me. I gave him an answer to those four questions. It was to the effect that I did not think any of them could reasonably be discussed in the immediate present. The request to-day has been put to me on entirely different grounds. Let me say first of all that I have not asked that the House should rise now and not sit again till 1st November on the plea that I wanted a rest. I am not so exhausted that I cannot carry out my duties, whatever they may be. I do not pretend that I am not as fond of a holiday as anyone else. But on this matter, this suggestion that in the next fortnight or three weeks something might happen which is of importance and which this House should have an opportunity of speaking its mind upon—upon that hypothesis I do ask hon. Members to look at the terms of the Motion. The Motion provides for the usual procedure, under which the House can be summoned by Mr. Speaker to meet again if such a situation should arise.

Mr. Churchill

But only on the advice of His Majesty's Government.

The Prime Minister

Really it is unworthy of my right hon. Friend on an occasion of this kind.

Mr. Churchill

Will my right hon. Friend kindly explain why the perfectly innocent question that I put to him, whether it was only on the advice of His Majesty's Ministers that Parliament could be summoned, should receive from him the wholly inappropriate expression of "unworthy"?

The Prime Minister

I will tell my right hon. Friend exactly what I think was unworthy of him. It was not his question just now but the suggestion that he made a few moments ago that Cabinet Ministers would be glad to see the House dispersed in order that they might get on with their business instead of having to face the House. A repetition of tittle-tattle about the way in which Cabinet business is conducted is not doing justice to the sincerity and to the sense of responsibility of Cabinet Ministers. It is true that the House can be called together only on a representation to Mr. Speaker by His Majesty's Government, but that is not to say that we are not fully conscious of the gravity of the times and that we are not fully prepared at any moment, if in our judgment the situation requires it, to give up our holiday and to return at once and answer to the House for anything that we might do. That, really, is a sufficient safeguard for those Members of the House

who feel that events may arise for which they ought to be called together, and I do not think it is necessary to fix any earlier time when we do not know what the conditions will be.

Question put, That this House, at its rising this day, do adjourn till Tuesday, 1st November; provided that if it is represented to Mr. Speaker by His Majesty's Government that the public interest requires that the House should meet at any earlier time during the Adjournment, and Mr. Speaker is satisfied that the public interest does so require, he may give notice that he is so satisfied, and thereupon the House shall meet at the time stated in such notice and the Government Business to be transacted on the day on which the House shall so meet shall, subject to the publication of notice thereof in the Order Paper to be circulated on the day on which the House shall so meet, be such as the Government may appoint, but subject as aforesaid the House shall transact its business as if it had been duly adjourned to the day on which it shall so meet, and any Government Orders of the Day and Government Notices of Motions that may stand on the Order Book for the 1st day of November or any subsequent day shall be appointed for the day on which the House shall so meet.

The House divided: Ayes, 313; Noes, 150.

Division No. 330.] AYES. [12.25 p.m.
Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple) Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Newbury) Davidson, Viscountess
Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J. Browne, A. C. (Belfast, W.) Davies, C. (Montgomery)
Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G. Bull, B. B. Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)
Albery, Sir Irving Bullock, Capt. M. De Chair, S. S
Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead) Burghley, Lord De la Bère, R.
Allen, Lt.-Col. Sir W. J. (Armagh) Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L. Denman, Hon. R. D.
Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S. Burton, Col. H. W. Denville, Alfred
Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.) Butcher, H. W. Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A.
Anderson, Rt. Hn. Sir J. (Sc'h Univ's) Butler, R. A. Dixon, Capt. Rt. Hon. H.
Anstruther-Gray, W. J. Campbell, Sir E. T. Doland, G. F.
Aske, Sir R. W. Carver, Major W. H. Donner, P. W.
Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton) Cary, R. A. Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.
Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.) Cayzer, Sir C. W. (City of Chester) Dower, Major A. V. G.
Baillie, Sir A. W. M. Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.) Drewe, C.
Baldwin-Webb, Col. J. Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.) Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)
Balfour, G. (Hampstead) Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n) Dugdale, Captain T. L.
Balniel, Lcrd Channon, H. Duncan, J. A. L.
Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M. Chapman, A. (Rutherglen) Dunglass, Lord
Barrie, Sir C. C. Chapman, Sir S. (Edinburgh, S.) Eastwood, J. F.
Baxter, A. Beverley Christie, J. A. Eckersley, P. T.
Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H. Clarke, Colonel R. S. (E. Grinstead) Edmondson, Major Sir J.
Beauchamp, Sir B. C. Clarry, Sir Reginald Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.
Beaumont, Hon. R. E. B. (Portsm'h) Clydesdale, Marquess of Elmley, Viscount
Beechman, N. A. Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston) Emery, J. F.
Beit, Sir A. L. Colfox, Major W. P. Emmott, C. E. G. C.
Bennett, Sir E. N. Colman, N. C. D. Entwistle, Sir C. F.
Bernays, R. H. Colville, Rt. Hon. John Errington, E.
Bird, Sir R. B. Conant, Captain R. J. E. Erskine-Hill, A. G.
Blair, Sir R. Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.) Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)
Blacker, Sir R. Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.) Everard, W. L.
Boothby, R. J. G. Cox, Trevor Fleming, E. L.
Bossom, A. C. Craven-Ellis, W. Fox, Sir G. W. G.
Boulton, W. W. Critchley, A. Fremantle, Sir F. E.
Bower, Comdr. R. T. Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page Furness, S. N.
Boyee, H. Leslie Crooke, Sir J. Smedley Fyfe, D. P. M.
Braithwaite, Major A. N. Croom-Johnson, R. P. Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir J.
Brass, Sir W. Cross, R. H. Gledhill, G.
Broadbridge, Sir G. T. Crossley, A. C. Gluckstein, L. H.
Broeklebank, Sir Edmund Crowder, J. F. E. Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.
Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham) Cruddas, Col. B. Goldie, N. B.
Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith) Culverwell, C. T. Gower, Sir R. V.
Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)
Grant-Ferris, R. McEwen, Capt. J. H. F. Sandeman, Sir N. S.
Granville, E. L. McKie, J. H. Sanderson, Sir F. B.
Grattan-Doyle, Sir N. Macnamara, Major J. R. J. Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.
Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester) Macquisten, F. A. Scott, Lord William
Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J. Magnay, T. Selley, H. R.
Gridley, Sir A. B. Makins, Brigadier-General Sir Ernest Shakespeare, G. H.
Grigg, Sir E. W. M. Manningham-Buller, Sir M. Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)
Grimston, R. V. Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R. Shaw, Captain W. T. (Forfar)
Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake) Marsden, Commander A. Shepperson, Sir E. W.
Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor) Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M. Shute, Colonel Sir J. J.
Hacking, Rt. Hon. Sir D. H. Maxwell, Hon. S. A. Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir J. A.
Hambro, A. V. Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J. Smith, L. W. (Hallam)
Hannah, I. C. Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth) Smith, Sir R. W. (Aberdeen)
Hannon, Sir P. J. H. Mills, Sir F. (Leyton, E.) Smithers, Sir W.
Harbord, A. Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest) Somervell, Rt. Hon. Sir Donald
Haslam, Henry (Horncastle) Mitchell, H. (Brentford and Chiswick) Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Heilgers, Captain F. F. A. Moore, Lieut.-Col. Sir T. C. R. Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.
Hely-Hutchinson, M. R. Moore-Brabazon, Lt.-Col. J. T. C. Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'ld)
Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P. Morgan, R. H. Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)
Hepworth, J. Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.) Stewart, William J. (Belfast, S.)
Herbert, A. P. (Oxford U.) Morris-Jones, Sir Henry Storey, S.
Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth) Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.) Stourton, Major Hon. J. J.
Hoare, Rt. Hon. Sir S. Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester) Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)
Holmes, J. S. Munro, P. Strickland, Captain W. F.
Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L. Nall, Sir J. Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)
Horsbrugh, Florence Nicholson, G. (Farnham) Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Naira)
Howitt, Dr. A. B. O'Connor, Sir Terence J. Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.
Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.) O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir Hugh Sutcliffe, H.
Hulbert, N. J. Orr-Ewing, I. L. Tasker, Sir R. I
Hume, Sir G. H. Palmer, G. E. H. Tate, Mavis C.
Hunloke, H. P. Peake, O. Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)
Hunter, T. Peat, C. U. Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)
Hurd, Sir P. A. Pickthorn, K. W. M. Thomson, Sir J. D. W.
Hutchinson, G. C. Pilkington, R. Thorneycroft, G. E. P.
Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H. Plugge, Capt. L. F. Titchfield, Marquess of
James, Wing-Commander A. W. H. Porritt, R. W. Touche, G. C.
Jarvis, Sir J. J. Pownall, Lt-Col. Sir Assheton Tree, A. R. L. F.
Jones, L. (Swansea W.) Purbrick, R. Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.
Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.) Radford, E. A. Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.
Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R. Raikes, H. V. A. M. Turton, R. H.
Kimball, L. Ramsay, Captain A. H. M. Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan
Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F. Ramsbotham, H. Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)
Lamb, Sir J. O. Rankin, Sir R. Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)
Lambert, Rt. Hon. G. Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin) Warrender, Sir V.
Leech, Sir J. W. Rawson, Sir Cooper Waterhouse, Captain C.
Leigh, Sir J. Rayner, Major R. H. Wedderburn, H. J. S.
Leighton, Major B. E. P. Reed, A. C. (Exeter) Whiteley, Major J. P. (Buckingham)
Lennox-Boyd, A. T. L. Reed, Sir H. S. (Aylesbury) Wickham, Lt.-Col E. T. R.
Levy, T. Reid, Captain A. Cunningham Williams, C. (Torquay)
Lewis, O. Reid, Sir D. D. (Down) Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)
Liddall, W. S. Reid, J. S. C. (Hillhead) Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Lindsay, K. M. Reid, W. Allan (Derby) Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.
Lipson, D. L. Remer, J. R. Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl
Little, Sir E. Graham- Rickards, G. W. (Skipton) Wise, A. R.
Llewellin, Colonel J. J. Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry) Womersley, Sir W. J.
Lloyd, G. W. Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge) Wood, Hon. C. I. C.
Locker-Lampson, Comdr. O. S. Rowlands, G. Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley
Loftus, P. C. Royds, Admiral Sir P. M. R. Wragg, H.
Lyons, A. M. Ruggles-Brise, Colonel Sir E. A. Wright, Wing-Commander J. A. C.
Mabane, W. (Huddersfield) Russell, Sir Alexander Young, A. S. L. (Partick)
MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G. Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)
M'Connell, Sir J. Salmon, Sir I. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
MacCorquodale, M. S. Salt, E. W. Lieut.-Colonel Kerr and Major
MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross) Samuel, M. R. A. Harvie Watt.
Macdonald, Capt. T. (Isle of Wight)
Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple) Brown, C. (Mansfield) Day, H.
Adams, D. (Consett) Buchanan, G. Dobbie, W.
Adams, D. M. (Poplar, S.) Burke, W. A. Dunn, E. (Rother Valley)
Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.) Cape, T. Ede, J. C.
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (H'lsbr.) Charleton, H. C. Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellty)
Ammon, C. G. Chater, D. Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)
Anderson, F. (Whitehaven) Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S. Fletcher, Lt.-Comdr. R. T. H.
Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R. Cluse, W. S. Foot, D. M.
Banfield, J. W. Cocks, F. S. Frankel, D.
Barnes, A. J. Collindridge, F. Gallacher, W.
Barr, J. Cove, W. G. Gardner, B. W.
Batey, J. Cripps, Hon. Sir Stafford George, Rt. Hon. D. Lloyd (Carn'v'n)
Bellenger, F. J. Daggar, G. George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)
Benn, Rt. Hon. W. W. Dalton, H. George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)
Benson, G. Davidson, J. J. (Maryhill) Gibson, R. (Greenock)
Broad, F. A. Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Graham, D. M. (Hamilton)
Green, W. H. (Deptford) McGhee, H. G. Salter, Sir J. Arthur (Oxford U.)
Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. McGovern, J. Seely, Sir H. M.
Grenfell, D. R MacLaren, A. Sexton, T. M.
Griffiths, G. A. (Hemsworth) Maclean, N. Shinwell, E.
Griffilhs, J. (Llanelly) Macmillan, H. (Stockton-on-Tees) Silkin, L.
Guest, Dr. L. H. (Islington, N.) MacMillan, M. (Western Isles) Silverman, S. S.
Hall, G. H. (Aberdare) Mainwaring, W. H. Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)
Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel) Mander, G. le M. Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)
Hardie, Agnes Marklew, E. Smith, E. (Stoke)
Harris, Sir P. A. Marshall, F. Smith, T. (Normanton)
Harvey, T. E. (Eng. Univ's.) Maxton, J. Sorensen, R. W.
Hayday, A. Milner, Major J. Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.
Henderson, A. (Kingswinford) Montague, F. Stephen, C.
Henderson, J. (Ardwick) Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.) Stewart, W. J. (H'ght'n-le-Sp'ng)
Henderson, T. (Tradeston) Nathan, Colonel H. L. Stokes, R. R.
Hicks, E. G. Naylor, T. E. Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)
Hopkin, D. Noel-Baker, P. J. Taylor, R. J. (Morpeth)
Jagger, J. Oliver, G. H. Thorne, W.
Jenkins, A. (Pontypool) Paling, W. Thurtle, E.
John, W. Parker, J. Tinker, J. J.
Jones, A. C. (Shipley) Parkinson, J. A. Tomlinson, G.
Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth) Pearson, A. Viant, S. P.
Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Pethiek-Lawrence, Rt. Hon. F. W. Watkins, F. C.
Kelly, W. T. Poole, C. C. Watson, W. McL.
Kennedy, Rt. Hon, T. Price, M. P. Welsh, J. C.
Kirby, B. V. Pritt, D. N. Westwood, J.
Lathan, G. Quibell, D. J. K. White, H. Graham
Lawson, J. J. Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.) Whiteley, W. (Blaydon)
Leach, W. Richards, R. (Wrexham) Wilkinson, Ellen
Lee, F. Ridley, G. Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)
Leonard, W. Riley, B. Windsor, W. (Hull, C.)
Logan, D. G. Ritson, J. Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)
Lunn, W. Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O. (W. Brom.) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Macdonald, G. (Ince) Robinson, W. A. (St. Helens) Mr. Groves and Mr. Adamson.
McEntee, V. La T. Rothschild, J. A. de

12.37 p.m.

Sir J. Simon

On a point of personal explanation, Mr. Speaker, I would ask your leave to say that I think my joking observations with reference to the two Statutes which the right hon. Gentleman opposite quoted may perhaps be misunderstood, and I wish to do justice to the right hon. Gentleman. Both the Statutes apply to the Bank, and there is a Section 30 in the earlier one, and though I do not think he in the least misunderstood the character of my remarks, I do not want it to stand on record that I seemed to be rebuking him when his researches were so far quite accurate.

Mr. Benn

I am much obliged to the right hon. Gentleman. What he has said is in the best House of Commons spirit.