HC Deb 23 August 1945 vol 413 c791
64. Mr. C. S. Taylor

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department to what extent it is still necessary for persons wishing to visit foreign countries, the Dominions or Colonies, to apply for an exit permit to leave this country, and when he proposes to remove this restriction.

Mr. Ede

The question whether it is possible to relax any of the existing requirements is at present under consideration, and I shall make an announcement as soon as I am in a position to do so.

Mr. Taylor

Will an announcement be made in the first instance in this House, or may we expect it during the Recess?

Mr. Ede

I hope to be able to make it before the House resumes, so that there shall be no delay, and in doing so I hope I shall be excused from any suggestion of discourtesy if it is made otherwise than on the Floor of this House.

Mr. Vernon Bartlett

Will the Minister see that the present regulations in connection with existing permits are simplified? Is it necessary for an applicant who has a passport to have to go to his local town hall and get his national identification number verified? Surely there could be some simplification?

Mr. Ede

Since I have taken office, official interviews have taken place with a view to securing as much simplification in this matter as is compatible with reasonable security.

Mr. Stephen

Will the Minister try to get the liberty of the citizens of this country back to what it was in pre-1914 days?

Mr. Ede

I am as much a libertarian as the hon. Member, and I can assure him that I regard every restriction with grave suspicion and have given my personal attention to a number of efforts to reduce them to the lowest possible minimum.