HC Deb 11 November 1943 vol 393 cc1294-5
68. Major Lloyd

asked the Home Secretary whether the expenses involved in the holding of the public meeting in the Caird Hall, Dundee, on 3rd October last, attended by the Regional Commissioner for Scotland and his deputy, at which he delivered a speech on the subject of State control of industry after the war, have been, or whether arrangements are being made for them to be, paid for out of public funds or will they be chargeable to the ratepayers of Dundee?

Mr. Gallacher

On a point of Order. Is it in Order for an hon. and gallant Member who is addressing similar meetings and who certainly does not advocate Socialism or Communism to put down Questions of this kind directed to the Minister?

Mr. Speaker

No point of Order arises. If a question is in accordance with the Rules of the House, an hon. Member is entitled to put it.

Mr. H. Morrison

I am much obliged to my hon. Friend. I was the guest of the Lord Provost and the Corporation of Dundee on this occasion and none of the cost tell on public funds. As regards the latter part of the Question, the financial arrangements made by my hosts are hardly a matter for me.

Major Lloyd

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, in the belief that this meeting was to be held for the Civil Defence Services of Dundee, the A.R.P. Controller of Civil Defence Services issued 1,400 tickets and that the Lord Provost and all sorts of influential persons had the advantage of attending the meeting, at which no reference to Civil Defence Services was made at all?

Mr. Morrison

As to the composition of the meeting, that is a matter for the local authorities. As to the rest of the Question of my hon. and gallant Friend, I hope they all derived benefit from what I said. May I just add that I think it is a bit out of proportion for extreme anti-controllers to be so anxious to control me in what I say?

Major Lloyd

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware of the fact that the Deputy Regional Commissioner for Scotland happened to be the prospective Labour candidate for Dundee?

Mr. Mathers

Is the Home Secretary aware that this is one of a series of Questions of the same character and that there is general detestation of the policy of persecution that they indicate?

Mr. Morrison

I am very well aware that this is one of a series of Questions, which I have noted with great interest. I think that what my hon. Friend said in the latter part of his Question is true.